Special Issue "Road and Rail Infrastructures"

A special issue of Infrastructures (ISSN 2412-3811).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 April 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Sakdirat Kaewunruen
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Birmingham Centre for Railway Research and Education, The University of Birmingham, Edgbaston B152TT, UK
Interests: rail infrastructure; structural engineering; dynamics; reliability and safety; impact engineering
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Erol Tutumluer
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Newmark Civil Engineering Laboratory, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, The Grainger College of Engineering University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL, USA.
Interests: artificial intelligence; transportation infrastructure; subgrade soils; geosynthetics; pavements; geo-materials; transportation geotechnics
Prof. Dr. Alex M. Remennikov
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
University of Wollongong, Wollongong NSW 2522, Australia
Interests: blast; physical threats; extreme loading; impact engineering; structural engineering; buildings; infrastructure design
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Road and rail infrastructure are critical systems that can instigate significant changes in social and economic growth, security, safety, and sustainable development in any country. At present, some of these critical infrastructure networks are aging and on the verge of failing due to exposure to extreme weather conditions. This is likely exacerbated by multiple hazards and climate change over their lifecycle. Emerging risks and their significant consequences, with no sign of early warnings, have been evidenced by many extreme events, such as the Nepal earthquakes, the Madrid train bombing, the Brussels metro attack, etc. The majority of past research emphasized the robustness of the critical infrastructure systems. Insights into infrastructure vulnerability and resilience are desperately needed to improve and modernize road and rail infrastructures from a fundamental design principle viewpoint. Many critical issues, such as choice of materials, durability, capacity and vulnerability, engineering properties, functionality requirements, and design concepts, remain unknown or unchanged. This causes uncertainties and safety risks within the infrastructure systems.

This Special Issue will address some of the most essential issues currently affecting the safety, resilience, and vulnerability of road and rail infrastructure systems. Rebuilding and enhancing urban infrastructure systems faces problems, beyond the search for engineering solutions. It is vital to instigate infrastructure adaptation actions to: (i) reduce exposure to hazards (e.g., by providing more robust and/or better designed structures); (ii) reduce the consequences of the hazard (e.g., using the affected resource more prudently, by reducing other pressures, and through preparation and readiness); and (iii) improve recovery from the hazard impact (by investing in effective recovery procedures). Thus, this Special Issue will accept various novel and original research topics related to road and rail infrastructure systems, including, but not limited to:

  • Fundamental engineering design
  • Safety, risks, and uncertainty
  • Smart infrastructure
  • Novel materials such as composites, metamaterials, etc.
  • Transportation geotechniques
  • Road and rail transportation
  • Mechanics, prognostics, and diagnostics
  • Health monitoring, inspection, NDT&E (non-destructive testing and evaluation), and signal processing
  • Data science and artificial intelligence
  • Multi-hazards and climate change adaptation
  • New technologies such as digital twins, BIM, decarbonization technologies, advanced sensors, etc. 

Dr. Sakdirat Kaewunruen
Prof. Erol Tutumluer
Prof. Alex M. Remennikov
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Infrastructures is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • road
  • rail
  • infrastructure
  • transportation
  • multi-hazards
  • critical infrastructures

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Socioeconomic Benefits of the Shinkansen Network
Infrastructures 2021, 6(5), 68; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures6050068 - 30 Apr 2021
Viewed by 388
Abstract
High speed rail (HSR) networks have been an essential catalyst in stimulating and balancing regional economic growth that ultimately benefits the society as a whole. Previous studies have revealed that HSR services sustainably yield superior social values for people, especially for adults and [...] Read more.
High speed rail (HSR) networks have been an essential catalyst in stimulating and balancing regional economic growth that ultimately benefits the society as a whole. Previous studies have revealed that HSR services sustainably yield superior social values for people, especially for adults and those of working age. This has become an advantage of HSR networks over other forms of public transportation. The Shinkansen network in Japan is one of most successful HSR models. Its services bring significant social advantages to the communities it serves, such as shorter travel times and increased job opportunities. Nevertheless, the societal impact of HSR networks depends on many factors, and the benefits of HSR could also be overrated. The goal of this research is to measure the socioeconomic impacts of HSR on people of all genders and age groups. The outcomes could lead to more suitable development of HSR projects and policies. This study investigates data sets for Japanese social factors over 55 years in order to determine the impacts of HSR. The assessment model has been established using Python. It applies Pearson’s correlation (PCC) technique as its main methodology. This study broadly assesses social impacts on population dynamics, education, age dependency, job opportunities, and mortality rate using an unparalleled dataset spanning 55 years of social factors. The results exhibit that younger generations have the most benefits in terms of equal educational accessibility. However, the growth of the HSR network does not influence an increase in the employment rate or labour force numbers, resulting in little benefit to the workforce. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Road and Rail Infrastructures)
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Open AccessArticle
A Validated Train-Track-Bridge Model with Nonlinear Support Conditions at Bridge Approaches
Infrastructures 2021, 6(4), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures6040059 - 16 Apr 2021
Viewed by 293
Abstract
A bridge approach, an essential component connecting a relatively rigid bridge and a more flexible track on subgrade soil, is one of the most common types of track transition zones. The tracks on a bridge deck often undergo significantly lower deformations under loading [...] Read more.
A bridge approach, an essential component connecting a relatively rigid bridge and a more flexible track on subgrade soil, is one of the most common types of track transition zones. The tracks on a bridge deck often undergo significantly lower deformations under loading compared to the approach tracks. Even though there have been numerous efforts to understand and remediate performance deficiencies emerging from the differences in stiffness between the bridge deck and the approach, issues such as differential settlement and unsupported hanging crossties often exist. It is often difficult and expensive to try different combinations of mitigation methods in the field. Therefore, computational modeling becomes of vital importance to study dynamic responses of railroad bridge approaches. In this study, field instrumentation data were collected from the track substructure of US Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor railroad track bridge approaches. After analyses and model implementation of such comprehensive field data, an advanced train-track-bridge model is introduced and validated in this paper. Nonlinear relative displacements under varying contact forces observed between crosstie and ballast are adequately considered in the dynamic track model. The validated model is then used to simulate an Amtrak passenger train entering an open deck bridge to generate typical track transient responses and better understand dynamic behavior trends in bridge approaches. The simulated results show that near bridge location experiences much larger transient deformations, impact forces, vibration velocities and vibration accelerations. The validated track model is an analysis tool to evaluate transient responses at bridge approaches with nonlinear support; it is intended to eventually aid in developing improved track design and maintenance practices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Road and Rail Infrastructures)
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Open AccessArticle
Recycled Aggregates Concrete Compressive Strength Prediction Using Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs)
Infrastructures 2021, 6(2), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures6020017 - 23 Jan 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 681
Abstract
The recycled aggregate is an alternative with great potential to replace the conventional concrete alongside with other benefits such as minimising the usage of natural resources in exploitation to produce new conventional concrete. Eventually, this will lead to reducing the construction waste, carbon [...] Read more.
The recycled aggregate is an alternative with great potential to replace the conventional concrete alongside with other benefits such as minimising the usage of natural resources in exploitation to produce new conventional concrete. Eventually, this will lead to reducing the construction waste, carbon footprints and energy consumption. This paper aims to study the recycled aggregate concrete compressive strength using Artificial Neural Network (ANN) which has been proven to be a powerful tool for use in predicting the mechanical properties of concrete. Three different ANN models where 1 hidden layer with 50 number of neurons, 2 hidden layers with (50 10) number of neurons and 2 hidden layers (modified activation function) with (60 3) number of neurons are constructed with the aid of Levenberg-Marquardt (LM) algorithm, trained and tested using 1030 datasets collected from related literature. The 8 input parameters such as cement, blast furnace slag, fly ash, water, superplasticizer, coarse aggregate, fine aggregate, and age are used in training the ANN models. The number of hidden layers, number of neurons and type of algorithm affect the prediction accuracy. The predicted recycled aggregates compressive strength shows the compositions of the admixtures such as binders, water–cement ratio and blast furnace–fly ash ratio greatly affect the recycled aggregates mechanical properties. The results show that the compressive strength prediction of the recycled aggregate concrete is predictable with a very high accuracy using the proposed ANN-based model. The proposed ANN-based model can be used further for optimising the proportion of waste material and other ingredients for different targets of concrete compressive strength. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Road and Rail Infrastructures)
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Open AccessArticle
BIM-Based Design for Road Infrastructure: A Critical Focus on Modeling Guardrails and Retaining Walls
Infrastructures 2020, 5(7), 59; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5070059 - 13 Jul 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1678
Abstract
Although building information modeling (BIM) has been widely adopted in the building industry for several decades, the use of BIM in the context of transportation infrastructure has been slow in terms of both adoption and application. Industry and academia are increasingly making efforts [...] Read more.
Although building information modeling (BIM) has been widely adopted in the building industry for several decades, the use of BIM in the context of transportation infrastructure has been slow in terms of both adoption and application. Industry and academia are increasingly making efforts to adopt BIM for other non-building civil infrastructure but, so far, there has not been a comprehensive review of these efforts specifically regarding transportation. This paper explores BIM implementation in an infrastructure design project. An Autodesk ® BIM-based tool, Civil 3D, is proposed as a potential BIM tool platform. This paper also focuses on modeling specific road elements not editable from the standard library, such as guardrails and retaining walls, as well as proposing different solutions using Revit and Subassembly Composer and analyzing the interoperability among BIM-based tools. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Road and Rail Infrastructures)
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Open AccessArticle
Damage Detection in Fiber-Reinforced Foamed Urethane Composite Railway Bearers Using Acoustic Emissions
Infrastructures 2020, 5(6), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/infrastructures5060050 - 21 Jun 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1928
Abstract
To a certain degree, composite railway sleepers and bearers have been recently employed as a replacement for conventional timber sleepers. Importantly, attributed to the rise in traffic demand, structural health monitoring of track structural members is essential to improve the maintenance regime and [...] Read more.
To a certain degree, composite railway sleepers and bearers have been recently employed as a replacement for conventional timber sleepers. Importantly, attributed to the rise in traffic demand, structural health monitoring of track structural members is essential to improve the maintenance regime and reduce risks imposed by any structural damage. A potential modern technique for detecting damage in railway components by using energy waves is called acoustic emission (AE). This technique has been widely used for concrete structures in other engineering applications, but the application for composites is relatively limited. Recently, fiber-reinforced foamed urethane (FFU) composites have been utilized as railway sleepers and bearers for applications in the railway industry. Neither does a design standard exist, nor have the inspection and monitoring criteria been properly established. In this study, three-point bending tests were performed together with using the AE method to detect crack growth in FFU composite beams. The ultimate state behaviors are considered to obtain the failure modes. This paper is thus the world’s first to focus on damage detection approaches for FFU composite beams using AE technology, additionally identifying the load-deflection curves of the beams. According to the experimental results, it is apparent that the failure modes of FFU composite beams are likely to be in brittle modes. Through finite element method, the results were in good agreement with less than 0.14% discrepancy between the experimental and numerical data. The attractive insights into an alternative technique for damage assessment of the composite components will help railway engineers to establish structural monitoring guidelines for railway composite sleepers and bearers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Road and Rail Infrastructures)
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