Failure of discontinuous railhead edges due to plastic strain accumulation

Bandula-Heva, Thaminda & Dhanasekar, Manicka (2014) Failure of discontinuous railhead edges due to plastic strain accumulation. Engineering Failure Analysis, 44, pp. 110-124.

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Railhead is perhaps the highest stressed civil infrastructure due to the passage of heavily loaded wheels through a very small contact patch. The stresses at the contact patch cause yielding of the railhead material and wear. Many theories exist for the prediction of these mechanisms of continuous rails; this process in the discontinuous rails is relatively sparingly researched. Discontinuous railhead edges fail due to accumulating excessive plastic strains. Significant safety concern is widely reported as these edges form part of Insulated Rail Joints (IRJs) in the signalling track circuitry. Since Hertzian contact is not valid at a discontinuous edge, 3D finite element (3DFE) models of wheel contact at a railhead edge have been used in this research. Elastic–plastic material properties of the head hardened rail steel have been experimentally determined through uniaxial monotonic tension tests and incorporated into a FE model of a cylindrical specimen subject to cyclic tension load- ing. The parameters required for the Chaboche kinematic hardening model have been determined from the stabilised hysteresis loops of the cyclic load simulation and imple- mented into the 3DFE model. The 3DFE predictions of the plastic strain accumulation in the vicinity of the wheel contact at discontinuous railhead edges are shown to be affected by the contact due to passage of wheels rather than the magnitude of the loads the wheels carry. Therefore to eliminate this failure mechanism, modification to the contact patch is essential; reduction in wheel load cannot solve this problem.

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6 citations in Scopus
4 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 72835
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Edge Failure, Strain Analysis, Railway Engineering, Finite Element Analysis
DOI: 10.1016/j.engfailanal.2014.04.017
ISSN: 1350-6307
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 Elsevier
Copyright Statement: This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Engineering Failure Analysis. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Engineering Failure Analysis, [VOL 44, (2014)] DOI: 10.1016/j.engfailanal.2014.04.017
Deposited On: 16 Jun 2014 03:25
Last Modified: 11 Sep 2016 21:15

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