CUED Publications database

Development of self-sensing concrete sleepers for next-generation rail infrastructure

Butler, LJ and Gibbons, N and Ping, H and Xu, J and Crowther, P and Elshafie, MZEB (2016) Development of self-sensing concrete sleepers for next-generation rail infrastructure. In: UNSPECIFIED pp. 15-20..

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© The authors and ICE Publishing: All rights reserved, 2016. This study presents the early stage development of 'self-sensing' prestressed concrete (PC) sleepers that utilise integrated dynamic fibre optic strain sensors. One of the aims of this research is to demonstrate a future vision of rail infrastructure where self-sensing instrumentation can be directly incorporated during the manufacturing process of mass-produced structural elements (such as PC sleepers). In partnership with CEMEX UK, eight PC sleepers were instrumented in their prestressing facility with fibre optic sensors based on fibre Bragg gratings (FBGs). These sensors are capable of recording strains dynamically up to 1 kHz at strain resolutions of 10 microstrain which will allows the system to acquire strain data under passing trains. Sensor data was collected during the entire manufacturing process which included concrete casting, curing, detensioning as well as monitoring during the British standard (BS EN 13230-2-2009) rail seat bending qualification test. Using the installed sensor networks, the detensioning process and early-Age qualification bend testing of the sleepers were captured in great detail. The recorded strain results confirmed the dynamic strain frequency capabilities of the sensors and showed good correlation with the expected structural response of the sleepers. These initial trials are very encouraging and will form the basis for a larger scale study on self-sensing PC sleepers involving laboratory testing, numerical modelling, and field monitoring. These next-generation sleepers have the ability to provide track designers and owners with invaluable real-Time sleeper strain data under live train loads which could lead to refined design assumptions and better informed long-Term maintenance planning.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (UNSPECIFIED)
Divisions: Div D > Construction Engineering
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2017 19:39
Last Modified: 22 May 2018 06:16