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Benchmark of new technologies to extend the life of elderly rail infrastructure: Deliverable D1.1 of the MAINLINE Project
Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Structural and Construction Engineering.
2013 (English)Report (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

There are many traditional technologies available to extend the life of elderly rail infrastructure, some of which are being improved or developed, whilst new technologies continue to emerge. In this report an overview is given of some of the most promising new or updated technologies. Based on these findings further work in the Mainline project will mostly focus on the following areas: - Assessment methods - Monitoring methods- Repair and Strengthening methodsQuestionnaires on bridges, tunnels, earthworks and track were prepared and twelve Infrastructure Managers have responded to the bridge questionnaire; responses to the other questionnaires have been more limited. If the results from this bridge sample are extrapolated from the about 125 000 km of network and the about 150 000 railway bridges that these Infrastructure Managers oversee to the full European network, which is about 230 000 km, a rough estimate may be obtained of the needs for the next years. Such an extrapolation suggests that in the next ten years we may expect to strengthen some 1 500 bridges, to replace some 4 500 bridges and to replace the deck of some 3 000 bridges. Some of the bridges that are planned to be replaced may instead be strengthened, if the new technologies presented here would be used.Work is also going on to improve the life length of track, switches and crossings and other rail infrastructure as earthwork, tunnels, drainage and culverts.It can also be seen that not many Infrastructure Managers currently use Life Cycle Costing (i.e. financial) and/or Life Cycle Assessment (i.e. environmental) in the planning of maintenance and repair of their rail infrastructure. There is a lack of data and methods and here the Mainline Project is intending to give guidance. There is also often a lack of economic resources for maintenance which may lead to a shorter life length and less sustainability than would otherwise be the case; results from the Mainline Project are also intended to give advice that may help to improve this situation.Stakeholders in Europe will benefit from reduced costs, higher efficiency and reduced environmental impact for existing rail infrastructure by using the methods presented here. For upgrading of bridges some 150 million Euros per year may be saved compared to the cost of replacing existing bridges with new ones. For track and other rail infrastructure similar savings may be achieved adding up to a total possible saving of more than 300 million euros per year. In Eastern Europe savings may be proportionally larger as a larger part of the tracks and the structures is old and in need of upgrading or replacement.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
MAINLINE , 2013. , 77 p.
Research subject
Structural Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:ltu:diva-23206Local ID: 60416ad9-421d-4792-8e5d-a2caa39daf95OAI: diva2:996255
Mainline-MAINtenance, renewaL and Improvement of rail transport iNfrastructure to reduce Economic and environmental impacts
Godkänd; 2013; 20130713 (elfgren)Available from: 2016-09-29 Created: 2016-09-29Bibliographically approved

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