CEDEX Track Box

CEDEX, Madrid/Spain

Scope

 CEDEX Track Box is a testing facility mainly developed for studying the geotechnical behavior of the railway infrastructure, composed by the track bed layers (ballast, sub-ballast, form layer, prepared subgrade) and the embankment. The facility allows testing models at 1:1 scale. The tests performed make it possible:

  • Analysis of short and long term behaviour of the components of railway tracks submitted to any kind of train traffic,
  • Determination of the response to innovations to be implemented in railway tracks,
  • Data collection for calibration of 3D numerical models

Specifications

The CEDEX Track Box (CTB) is a 21 m long, 5 m wide and 4 m deep facility mainly for testing at 1:1 scale, complete railway track sections of conventional and high speed lines for passenger, freight and mixed traffics, at speeds up to 400 km/h. This facility includes in its design the execution of the railway substructure which covers the sub-ballast and form the layers and the embankment zones.

The CTB length it is divided into three zones, each of one can be used for a different railway track design section. The reproduction of the effect of the approaching, passing-by and going away of a train in a test cross-section, as it occurs in a real track section, is performed by application of loads, adequately unphased, via three pairs of servohydraulic actuators (maximum load of 250 kN at a frequency of 50 Hz). These actuators are placed on each rail at 1.5 m longitudinal separation. Its principal advantage is the possibility of performing fatigue tests in a fast way as in one working week, the effect of the passing-by of trains during a year in a real section can be modelled.

The tests that can be performed in CTB can have the following features:
  • Tests with passenger and freight trains.
  • Tests with static loads to determine track stiffness.
  • Tests with quasi -static loads to simulate the pass-by of trains at speeds up to 420 km/h.
  • Tests with dynamic loads to simulate the effects induced by track irregularities.
  • Test to determine the fatigue behaviour of any track component (mainly, fastening system, ballast, subballast) by the simulation of pass-by of millions of axle trains.
  • Tests to reproduce the effect of tamping operations on ballast degradation.
  • Tests on vibration propagation.
  • Tests to determine the lateral and longitudinal track resistance.
View of the loading system formed by three pairs of hydraulic actuators
Facility Details
Name CEDEX Track Box
Short Name CTB
Owner CEDEX
Location Madrid/Spain
Website Click Here to Visit Site
Contact jose.estaire@cedex.es
Head of facility José Estaire
Construction year 2004

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