Analysis on dynamic performance of different track transition forms using the discrete element/finite difference hybrid method

A. Andersson, C. Shi, C. Zhao, X. Zhang
Computers & Structures
Combined simulation, Discrete-continuum, Dynamic performance, Track transition forms, Track-substructure system

To analyze the mesodynamic and macrodynamic performance of the track transitions more precisely, a bridge-embankment transition model has been established by combining the discrete element method (DEM) with the finite difference method (FDM). In this model, the DEM is utilized to model sleepers and ballast particles with complex shape, and the FDM is applied to simulate the abutment, transition section and embankment. The DEM/FDM coupled model is then achieved by exchanging displacements, velocities, and contact forces at the interface. Afterwards, the influence of the transition section parameters and transition forms on dynamic behaviour of the track-substructure system is studied under measured rail seat load. The numerical simulations indicate that the increase of the transition section elastic modulus, decrease of the backfill slope values and the transition form of trapezoid backfill following by inverted trapezoid backfill can provide a better displacement gradient between the abutment and the embankment. Additionally, the results show that the inverted trapezoid transition form can provide a better transition of the track dynamic performance than the trapezoid transition form and the embankment soil over the wedge-shape backfill has the tendency to propagate along the slope toward the embankment section under the moving train load for the trapezoid transition form.

Keywords: Discrete-continuum, Combined simulation, Track transition forms, Track-substructure system, Dynamic performance

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