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Long-term performance of pile-supported ballastless track-bed at various water levels

Wang, Hanlin, Chen, Ren-Peng, Qi, Shuai, Cheng, Wei and Cui, Yu-Jun 2018. Long-term performance of pile-supported ballastless track-bed at various water levels. Journal of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering 144 (6) , -. 10.1061/(ASCE)GT.1943-5606.0001890

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Abstract

In recent years, the constructions of pile-supported ballastless track-bed have been developed rapidly in China. It appears important to assess the accumulative settlement of this kind of track-bed after years of operation, especially under unfavorable conditions, such as the rising of water level. In this study, a full-scale physical model simulating the pile-supported ballastless track-bed was established. The soil arching effect was previously developed in this model by draining out water in the water bags among the pile caps. The effects of water level and loading cycle on the accumulative settlement of this model were investigated following four testing procedures: water level rising, cyclic loading at high water level, water level lowering, and cyclic loading at low water level. The results indicated that the total accumulative settlement of the track-bed increased rapidly in the beginning of loading and tended to stabilize as the loading cycle increased at high water level, whereas the value varied slightly when loading at low water level. The distribution of the accumulative settlement inside the subgrade at the end of loading with high water level and at the end of this test both presented parabolic shaped variation trends, with the peak point occurring above the water bag and lower values developing above the pile cap. At the high water level, a modified model was applied to estimate the accumulative settlement of the unsaturated zone above the water level (height of soil arch), and the fitting parameters in this model were precalibrated using the testing data. The estimated results revealed that the deformation of the unsaturated zone above the water level accounted for a minor portion of that of the whole tack-bed. By contrast, the zone below the water level is the dominant factor to influence the accumulative settlement of the whole track-bed. From a practical point of view, a well-performing drainage system should be set up to avoid the rising of water level.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Engineering
Publisher: American Society of Civil Engineers
ISSN: 1090-0241
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 3 January 2019
Date of Acceptance: 13 December 2017
Last Modified: 09 Jan 2019 16:00
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/118058

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