Development of New Damping Materials for Ballastless Trackbed and their Behavior under Mixed Traffic

UTK Project Information

NuRail Project IDNURail2012-UTK-R03
Project TitleDevelopment of New Damping Materials for Ballastless Trackbed and their Behavior under Mixed Traffic
UniversityUniversity of Tennessee at Knoxville
Project ManagerClarke
Principal InvestigatorHuang
PI Contact InformationPhone: (865) 974-7713 Email:
Funding Source(s) and Amounts Provided (by each agency or organization)$45,000 Hebei Institue of Construction and Geotechnical Investigation Co., Ltd; $45,000 USDOT RITA
Total Project Cost$90,000
Agency ID or Contract NumberDTRT12-G-UTC18 (Grant 1)
Start Date2012-07-01
End Date2013-12-31
Brief Description of Research ProjectDamping is a critical factor for the safe operation of passenger and freight shared track railway. Currently, three types of material are commonly used to provide the damping: (1) asphalt trackbed; (2) crumb rubber modified asphalt; (3) asphalt-modified portland cement mortar (AMPCM). AMPCM possesses higher strength and modulus than asphalt materials but lower than those of concrete, which makes it more suited for ballastless railway construction than other materials. In Japan, China, and Europe, AMPCM has been widely used in high-speed rail (HSR). However, little research has been conducted on AMPCM in the U.S. The objectives of this proposed study are to (1) develop new damping materials for use in trackbed and (2) to evaluate the behavior of these new materials under mixed traffic such as high-speed passenger trains and heavy axle freight trains. Two new damping materials will be developed - AMPCM and crumb rubber-modified concrete. Crumb rubber-modified concrete exhibits proper strength, modulus as well as damping coefficient and has the potential to replace ballast. The PI holds a U.S. patent on rubber-modified cementitious materials (Patent No.7,985,786, July 2011), which will significantly contribute to this research project. The mix design of the damping materials will be thoroughly investigated and their performance will be evaluated through laboratory performance tests. The strength, modulus, fatigue, damping, and durability properties of the mixtures will be evaluated based on the results from the laboratory tests. The responses of these materials under mixed traffic of passenger and freight trains will be calculated and examined. The applicability of these materials in railway construction will be evaluated.
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Project Website
Final ReportNURail2012-UTK-R03_Final_Report_Huang_CEAM1.pdf