Rail Track Maintenance Planning: An Assessment Model

Simson, Scott, Ferreira, Luis, & Murray, Martin (2000) Rail Track Maintenance Planning: An Assessment Model. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, 1713.


In Australia, railway track maintenance costs comprise between 25-35 percent of total freight train operating costs. Track maintenance planning models have been shown to reduce maintenance costs by 5 to 10 percent though improved planning. This paper describes a model which has been developed to deal with the track maintenance planning function at the medium to long-term levels. This model simulates the impacts of degrading railway track conditions and related maintenance work, in contrast to tradition models that mainly use expert systems. The model simulates the degrading track condition using an existing track degradation model. Track condition data from that model is used to determine if safety related speed restrictions are needed and what immediate maintenance work may be required for safe train operations. The model outputs the net present value of the benefits of undertaking a given maintenance strategy, when compared with a base-case scenario. The model approach has advantages over current models in investigating what if scenarios. The track engineer can assess the possible benefits in reduced operating costs from upgrading track infrastructure or from the use of improved maintenance equipment. After describing the model inputs and the assumptions used, the paper deals with the simulation of track maintenance and of train operating costs over time. The results of applying the model to a test track section using a number of different maintenance strategies are also given.

Impact and interest:

13 citations in Scopus
6 citations in Web of Science®
Search Google Scholar™

Citation counts are sourced monthly from Scopus and Web of Science® citation databases.

These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.

Citations counts from the Google Scholar™ indexing service can be viewed at the linked Google Scholar™ search.

Full-text downloads:

1,887 since deposited on 16 Nov 2005
130 in the past twelve months

Full-text downloads displays the total number of times this work’s files (e.g., a PDF) have been downloaded from QUT ePrints as well as the number of downloads in the previous 365 days. The count includes downloads for all files if a work has more than one.

ID Code: 2515
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional Information: The research reported here was funded by the Australian Research Council and by Queensland Railways.
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Railway, Track maintenance, Maintenance Planning, Modelling
ISSN: 0361-1981
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ENGINEERING (090000) > CIVIL ENGINEERING (090500) > Transport Engineering (090507)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2000 National Academy of Sciences
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 16 Nov 2005 00:00
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 12:28

Export: EndNote | Dublin Core | BibTeX

Repository Staff Only: item control page