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Remote Sens. 2014, 6(10), 9712-9728;

GPR Laboratory Tests For Railways Materials Dielectric Properties Assessment

Sapienza University of Rome, Via Eudossiana 18, 00184 Rome, Italy
National Laboratory for Civil Engineering (LNEC), Avenida do Brasil, 101, 1700-066 Lisbon, Portugal
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 June 2014 / Revised: 30 August 2014 / Accepted: 10 September 2014 / Published: 13 October 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Close-Range Remote Sensing by Ground Penetrating Radar)
PDF [5674 KB, uploaded 22 October 2014]


In railways Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) studies, the evaluation of materials dielectric properties is critical as they are sensitive to water content, to petrographic type of aggregates and to fouling condition of the ballast. Under the load traffic, maintenance actions and climatic effects, ballast condition change due to aggregate breakdown and to subgrade soils pumping, mainly on existing lines with no sub ballast layer. The main purpose of this study was to validate, under controlled conditions, the dielectric values of materials used in Portuguese railways, in order to improve the GPR interpretation using commercial software and consequently the management maintenance planning. Different materials were tested and a broad range of in situ conditions were simulated in laboratory, in physical models. GPR tests were performed with five antennas with frequencies between 400 and 1800 MHz. The variation of the dielectric properties was measured, and the range of values that can be obtained for different material condition was defined. Additionally, in situ GPR measurements and test pits were performed for validation of the dielectric constant of clean ballast. The results obtained are analyzed and the main conclusions are presented herein. View Full-Text
Keywords: Ground Penetrating Radar; laboratory tests; fouling level; railway materials Ground Penetrating Radar; laboratory tests; fouling level; railway materials

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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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De Chiara, F.; Fontul, S.; Fortunato, E. GPR Laboratory Tests For Railways Materials Dielectric Properties Assessment. Remote Sens. 2014, 6, 9712-9728.

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