Development of integrated model for assessment of operational risks in rail track

G. Chattopadhyay, V. Reddy
2007 2007 IEEE International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management  
In recent years there has been continuous increase of axle loads, tonnage, train speed, and train length which has increased both the productivity in the rail sector and the risk of rail breaks and derailments. Rail operating risks have been increasing due to the increased number of axle passes, sharper curves, wear-out of rails and wheels, inadequate rail-wheel grinding and poor lubrication and maintenance. Rolling contact fatigue (RCF) and wear are significant problems for railway companies.
more » ... n 2000, the Hatfield accident in the UK killed 4 people, injured 34 people and led to the cost of £ 733 million (AUD$ 1.73 billion) for repairs and compensation. In 1977, the Granville train disaster in Australia killed 83 people and injured 213 people. These accidents were related to rolling contact fatigue, wear and poor maintenance. Studies on rail wear and lubrication, rolling contact fatigue and inspection and rail grinding analyse and assess the asset condition to take corrective and preventive measures for maintaining reliability and safety of rail track. Such measures can reduce the operational risks and the costs by early detection and prevention of rail failures, rail breaks and derailments. Studies have so far been carried out in isolation and have failed to provide a practical solution to a complex problem such as rail-wheel wearfatigue-lubrication-grinding-inspection for cost effective maintenance decisions. Therefore, there is a need to develop integrated economic models to predict expected total cost and operational risks and to make informed decisions on rail track maintenance. The major challenges to rail infrastructure and rolling stock operators are to: 1. keep rolling contact fatigue and rail-wheel wear under controllable limits, 2. strike a balance between rail grinding and rail lubrication, and 3. take commercial decisions on grinding intervals, inspection intervals, lubrication placements, preventive maintenance and rail replacements. This research addresses the development and analysis of an integrated model for assessment of operational risks in rail track. Most significantly, it deals with problems associated with higher axle loads; wear; rolling contact fatigue; rail defects leading to early rail replacements; and rail breaks and derailments. The contribution of this research includes the development of: • 5.41% of total maintenance costs with two inspections, compared to one inspection considering risk due to rail breaks and derailments. • 45.06% of total maintenance costs with lubrication for two inspections, compared to without lubrication. Cost saving per meter per year for 23 MGT is: • 5.61% of total maintenance costs with two inspections, compared to one inspection considering risk due to rail breaks and derailments. • 68.68% of total maintenance costs with lubrication for two inspections, per year compared to no lubrication. The thesis concludes with a brief summary of the contributions that it makes to this field and the scope for future research in wear-fatigue-lubrication-grinding-inspection for maintenance of rail infrastructure.
doi:10.1109/ieem.2007.4419262 fatcat:au4sig6m4ng5hgslbiopw5iwge