A critical component of the vehicle-track interaction is the performance of the rail. In this research theme we consider the degradation of the rail steel in terms of microstructural deformation and rolling contact fatigue crack initiation, this information is an essential input into rail life modeling.
For maintenance schedules to be efficiently planned modeling crack formation and propagation is required, however, additionally monitoring of cracks is also necessary. Research into novel (particularly high speed) crack detection systems is a central part of this theme.
Current projects in metallurgical performance and evaluation