Fiber Reinforced Concrete Track Slab

EPC are the industry leaders in fiber reinforced concrete track slab, providing the best fibers, comprehensive design support and proven project experience. Our high performance BarChip synthetic fiber concrete reinforcement eliminates the need for steel reinforcing bars in modern concrete track slab, decreasing construction times and long term maintenance costs. EPC’s fiber concrete is suitable for use with;

  • Embedded rail
  • Floating slabs
  • Precast track slab
  • Slip formed track slab
  • Cast in sleepers
  • Booted sleepers
  • Direct fixing and resilient baseplate

Concrete track slabs have been increasingly used as an alternative to ballasted track systems, particularly for high speed rail, to overcome problems associated with traditional ballast track. They have also become commonplace in metro light rail construction, where the rail corridor is shared by road traffic, and the rail is embedded into the concrete track slab. Concrete track slabs are used as they enable faster construction times, provide a longer design life and require less maintenance than traditional ballast systems.

Traditional steel reinforcement presents several drawbacks to concrete track slab. Laying and tying steel reinforcement is a huge time consumer during the construction process and the logistical problems from placing bars at close centres can severely slow construction times. Steel bar can also cause unwanted conductivity from the rail potentially causing corrosion of steel infrastructure.

EPC’s BarChip structural synthetic fiber concrete used in concrete track slab eliminates steel related problems. The benefits of EPC BarChip synthetic fiber include;

  • Significant reduction in construction time – no placing of steel
  • Increased durability – no corrosion of reinforcement
  • Reduced maintenance costs, increased design life cycle
  • Eliminate transport and storage of steel reinforcement
  • Elimination of stray current and related corrosion problems
  • The fiber reinforces the full depth of the concrete slab – unlike steel bar
  • No need to box out or predesignate areas in order to avoid the steel reinforcing
  • Ease of creating contraction joints – no obstacles from steel reinforcement patterns
  • Improved crack resistance and crack control throughout the section

 

FEA designs show in full transparency the performance of fiber reinforced concrete track slab.

FEA design output shows in full transparency the performance of fiber reinforced concrete track slab.

 

Proven Performance in Fiber Reinforced Concrete Track Slab

Docklands Light Railway, UK.

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab at the Docklands Light Rail, UK

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab at the Docklands Light Rail, UK.

 

Szeged Tramway, Hungary.

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab at the Szeged electrified tramway.

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab at the Szeged electrified tramway, Hungary.

Oita Elevated High Speed Railway, Japan.

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab on the Oita elevated high speed rail.

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab at the Oita elevated high speed rail, Japan.

 

Bukit Berapit High Speed Rail, Malaysia.

Fiber reinforced concrete track slab on the Bukit Berapit high speed rail tunnel.

Fiber reinforced concrete Track slab on the Bukit Berapit high speed rail tunnel.

Innotrax Slip Formed Fiber Reinforced Concrete Track Slab

Innotrax is an innovative new slip formed construction method for concrete track slab. The principles of the innovation are based on slip forming a slab track with a surface that has a plus tolerance. In other words, the slab track after production is too high in relation to the exact height that is required, but never lower than the ideal height. Once hardened, the concrete is profiled to the exact height. This has been done before, but the existing methods were slow and expensive.

Innotrax has succeeded in developing a method with which the concrete can be economically profiled with great precision and at high speed. This can be done with both hand poured or slip formed concrete, but preferably slip formed to have a consistent compaction of the slab. The Innotrax system is designed to complete 250-m to 400-m per day and can be profiled to a precision of 1 to 2 mm.

To compliment this process, Innotrax has designed and tested a system to pre-install dowels for the rail fasteners, before the concrete is slip formed. The concrete is slip formed over the sealed dowels and when the concrete is profiled the dowels come free, ready for the rail fasteners to be mounted.

Another big advantage when the slab track is constructed by slip forming, is the use of EPC’s macro synthetic fibers, which can completely eliminate the use of steel reinforcement. Besides saving a lot of money on steel reinforcement, labor and logistics, macro synthetic fibers are not conductive and corrosion free, which is a big advantage in the railway world. The logistics of concrete, especially in single tunnels will be less complex when using EPC’s synthetic fibers.

Innotrax slip formed EPC fiber reinforced concrete track slab.

Innotrax slip formed EPC fiber reinforced concrete track slab.

 

PreCast Advanced Track (PCAT) – SMART Railway Track Structure.

PCAT (PreCast Advanced Track) is a new concept in railway construction which challenges the traditional engineering method of supporting railway tracks on ballast. PCAT is designed with a 120 year design life and represents a step change in design technology.

The PCAT slab design is based on a Channel Beam upper profile which provides a high modulus slab monocoque structure, this maximises the slab strength and minimises the stiffness needed for the track foundation. This allows PCAT tracks to be constructed quicker than conventional track.

Independent studies on PCAT light rail and heavy rail systems were completed by AECOM, Mott Macdonald and Viaduct in 2015 and funded by SBRI, Innovate UK, Dft and UK National Rail. The studies showed that;

  • PCAT-LRT saved 70% in construction time
  • PCAT-LRT delivered a 52% saving in capital cost
  • PCAT-LRT delivered a 38% reduction in service life maintenance
  • PCAT-HR was similar in cost to traditional ballast but faster to install
  • PCAT-HR delivered a 59% reduction in service life maintenance
  • PCAT HR and LRT increased track capacity and availability

PCAT is reinforced solely with EPC’s BarChip macro synthetic fibre reinforcement.

 

PCAT; Precast concrete track slab reinforced with EPC BarChip synthetic fiber

PCAT; Precast concrete track slab reinforced solely with EPC’s BarChip synthetic fiber

 

Todd Clarke from Elasto Plastic Concrete will be presenting the paper; “A Cost-effective alternative to conventional concrete track slab design and construction”. Contact US for a copy of the paper or If you want to know more about using an EPC fiber reinforced concrete track slab.

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