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Sustainability 2018, 10(10), 3753; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10103753

Life Cycle Assessment of Railway Ground-Borne Noise and Vibration Mitigation Methods Using Geosynthetics, Metamaterials and Ground Improvement

1
Laboratory for Track Engineering and Operations for Future Uncertainties (TOFU Lab), School of Engineering, The University of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK
2
Paris School of Urban Engineering, DeEcole des ingénieurs de la ville de Paris, 80 Rue Rebeval, 75019 Paris, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 September 2018 / Revised: 13 October 2018 / Accepted: 15 October 2018 / Published: 18 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Transportation)
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Abstract

Significant increase in the demand for freight and passenger transports by trains pushes the railway authorities and train companies to increase the speed, the axle load and the number of train carriages/wagons. All of these actions increase ground-borne noise and vibrations that negatively affect people who work, stay, or reside nearby the railway lines. In order to mitigate these phenomena, many techniques have been developed and studied but there is a serious lack of life-cycle information regarding such the methods in order to make a well-informed and sustainable decision. The aim of this study is to evaluate the life-cycle performance of mitigation methods that can enhance sustainability and efficacy in the railway industry. The emphasis of this study is placed on new methods for ground-borne noise and vibration mitigation including metamaterials, geosynthetics, and ground improvement. To benchmark all of these methods, identical baseline assumptions and the life-cycle analysis over 50 years have been adopted where relevant. This study also evaluates and highlights the impact of extreme climate conditions on the life-cycle cost of each method. It is found that the anti-resonator method is the most expensive methods compared with the others whilst the use of geogrids (for subgrade stiffening) is relatively reliable when used in combination with ground improvements. The adverse climate has also played a significant role in all of the methods. However, it was found that sustainable methods, which are less sensitive to extreme climate, are associated with the applications of geosynthetic materials such as geogrids, composites, etc. View Full-Text
Keywords: life-cycle assessment; ground-borne noise and vibration; railway vibration; railway noise; vibration and noise mitigation methods; geosynthetics; metamaterials; ground improvement; Net Present Value life-cycle assessment; ground-borne noise and vibration; railway vibration; railway noise; vibration and noise mitigation methods; geosynthetics; metamaterials; ground improvement; Net Present Value
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Kaewunruen, S.; Martin, V. Life Cycle Assessment of Railway Ground-Borne Noise and Vibration Mitigation Methods Using Geosynthetics, Metamaterials and Ground Improvement. Sustainability 2018, 10, 3753.

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