Advances in Railway Infrastructure Engineering

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Transportation and Future Mobility".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 29 February 2024 | Viewed by 6120

Special Issue Editors

Department of Railway Transport, University of Zagreb, P-1, Facility 70, ZUK Borongaj, Zagreb, Croatia
Interests: railway traffic organization; integrated passenger transport; traffic statistics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Head of Department of Transportation, Stanisław Staszic State University of Applied Sciences in Piła, 64920 Piła, Poland
Interests: safety; transport

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Climate change is significantly affecting our planet. Decarbonisation is an important focus for decelerating climate change. The transport sector is one of the highest producers of negative climate effects. One of the solutions for lowering the impact of transport on climate issues is changing the paradigm that road transport is always the right answer. Therefore, in recent decades, different modal shift models have been developed to decrease road transport usage in favour of other more ecologically friendly modes, such as railway and inland waterways.

One of the possible solutions is the railway. The railway system is complex and sometimes does not adapt to necessary changes in business models. Today, business models favour the common idea of sustainability, and therefore the railway system’s more old-fashioned business model urgently needs to change.

One of the most complex aspects of the railway system is infrastructure. Infrastructure is fixed equipment that is necessary for running the trains. Very often, some parts of the infrastructure are more than 100 years old but are still able to run the trains. Scholars, therefore, should address the question of whether it is both safe and economical to continue to use these old parts.

Very often, railway lines are overhauled, but after a few years the necessary maintenance ceases, and as a result the speed of the train lines is reduced. This therefore leads to a second question for scholars: “What are the feasible models for maintaining railway lines at their original standards?”.

For future decarbonization, we need now to take a step in the right direction. We call for research on all kinds of aspects of railway infrastructure and new sustainable infrastructure for railway systems.

Prof. Dr. Borna Abramović
Dr. Piotr Gorzelańczyk
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • railway traffic
  • railway system
  • railway management
  • railway infrastructure
  • railway maintenance models
  • the economy of railway infrastructure
  • financing of railway infrastructure
  • sustainable railway system

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 3413 KiB  
Article
Influence of Different Prioritization Approaches of Maintenance and Replacement Measures on Station Infrastructure Quality
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(23), 12883; https://doi.org/10.3390/app132312883 - 30 Nov 2023
Viewed by 448
Abstract
This paper presents a model that establishes a relationship between the financial resources allocated to maintain and replace railway station infrastructure assets and the resulting infrastructure quality. Until now, there has been no known relationship between quality and financial resources, making targeted planning [...] Read more.
This paper presents a model that establishes a relationship between the financial resources allocated to maintain and replace railway station infrastructure assets and the resulting infrastructure quality. Until now, there has been no known relationship between quality and financial resources, making targeted planning for railway stations and the control of financial resources challenging. This model aims to predict infrastructure quality by analyzing the age-related degradation of infrastructure assets using historical data. The effects of maintenance and replacement measures are implemented in the model to map quality-improving measures. This allows for the comparison and analysis of different budget allocation scenarios on different assets, with different approaches for prioritizing replacement and maintenance measures. In this paper, the influence of budget allocation and prioritization strategies on station infrastructure quality is quantified by comparing different scenarios. Based on the results of the analysis, a quality assessment method can be evaluated, and disincentives can be identified. The analyses in this paper are carried out for quality measurement defined in Germany and the German railway station infrastructure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Railway Infrastructure Engineering)
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17 pages, 4634 KiB  
Article
Analyzing Escalator Infrastructures: A Pilot Study in Santiago Metro
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(20), 11117; https://doi.org/10.3390/app132011117 - 10 Oct 2023
Viewed by 2304
Abstract
The behavior of passengers in urban railway stations (i.e., metro stations) is dependent on environmental, cultural, and temporal factors. This affects how escalator infrastructures are used, with some passengers standing on one side of the steps to allow others to walk and, in [...] Read more.
The behavior of passengers in urban railway stations (i.e., metro stations) is dependent on environmental, cultural, and temporal factors. This affects how escalator infrastructures are used, with some passengers standing on one side of the steps to allow others to walk and, in other cases, others standing or walking on both sides of the steps. In this research, escalator infrastructures were studied to better understand the relationship between different conditions and passenger behaviors through a method based on video cameras, passenger detection techniques, and a simulation framework. The results indicate that passenger behavior could affect escalator infrastructure as it varies significantly depending on the time of day, type of station, local culture, and other environmental factors. The implications of these findings for the planning and design of the infrastructure of railway stations are discussed, and practical recommendations are proposed to improve the efficiency of escalator usage in urban railway stations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Railway Infrastructure Engineering)
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25 pages, 6609 KiB  
Article
Efficient Railway Turnout Design: Leveraging TRIZ-Based Approaches
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(17), 9531; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13179531 - 23 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1774
Abstract
This study focuses on the design and improvement of railway turnouts, which are critical yet complex parts of the railway infrastructure. As they are responsible for track discontinuity and potential derailments, turnouts pose significant challenges in terms of slack, misalignment and rail breakage. [...] Read more.
This study focuses on the design and improvement of railway turnouts, which are critical yet complex parts of the railway infrastructure. As they are responsible for track discontinuity and potential derailments, turnouts pose significant challenges in terms of slack, misalignment and rail breakage. A new concept related to the design of turnouts, including switches and crossings, is presented in this paper. The application of TRIZ (Theory of Inventive Problem Solving) principles, specifically the use of the contradiction matrix, was instrumental to achieving these innovative designs for railway systems and represents the main contribution of the paper. Based on the systematic use of the TRIZ principles, the proposed design addresses the problems associated with switches and crossings by replacing the classic frog with a movable element that sits in the crossing gap and reduces the existing gap, thus minimising the length of the rail gap and, consequently, providing greater contact with the rail, minimising wheel impacts on the rail gap and, consequently, decreasing the risk of derailment. By reducing rail contact forces, which are a major contributor to derailments, the risk of derailment is reduced. This study also introduces a new design for the switch rail system using a piston mechanism with an up and down stroke, which is accompanied by a rotating motor at the top for controlled movement. Finally, numerical simulations were performed to validate the proposed designs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Railway Infrastructure Engineering)
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13 pages, 3569 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Influence of Moisture Variation on the Behavior of Tropical Soils of Carajás Railway
Appl. Sci. 2023, 13(13), 7909; https://doi.org/10.3390/app13137909 - 06 Jul 2023
Viewed by 916
Abstract
The criteria for selecting materials for railway pavement (particle size distribution, California Support Index, and physical indexes) are not suitable for evaluating the hydraulic behavior of tropical soils under unsaturated conditions, often resulting in the rejection of soils with good mechanical and hydraulic [...] Read more.
The criteria for selecting materials for railway pavement (particle size distribution, California Support Index, and physical indexes) are not suitable for evaluating the hydraulic behavior of tropical soils under unsaturated conditions, often resulting in the rejection of soils with good mechanical and hydraulic performance. The railway trackbed is exposed to precipitation, allowing water infiltration into the pavement layers and consequently leading to moisture variation. Therefore, the present study aims to assess the moisture variation over time in the railway trackbed when subjected to the action of rainfall. For this purpose, five soils were analyzed as constituent materials of the subballast, with the infrastructure of the Carajás Railway in Brazil being used as a reference. Water retention curves and conductivity tests were conducted using the HYPROP (Hydraulic Property Analyzer) and WP4-C (Water Potential Four) equipment, and numerical modeling was developed using the IVFlow software. The numerical modeling revealed that sample 1 (lateritic sand) performed better compared to the other analyzed soils, as it exhibited lower moisture variation (3.25% above the optimum content) under the influence of rainfall and it also had low permeability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Railway Infrastructure Engineering)
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