TU Braunschweig


Quiroga, L. M.; Antoni, M.; Schnieder, E.:
Holistic long-term optimization of maintenance strategies on ballasted railway track.
PSAM 11 & ESREL 2012, Juni 2012.


Railway infrastructures are characterized by useful lives of more than 30 years. Such long useful lives make long-term maintenance strategies crucial. In this paper a simulation approach for the whole useful life of ballasted tracks is presented. It relies on a stochastic model of the aging and restoration process of railway track geometry and a heuristic algorithm for maintenance interventions planning. Its objective is the simulation, analysis and optimization of track geometry maintenance strategies during the whole useful life of the track, under consideration of the aging and restoration characteristics of each track sector and the resources available for maintenance. The results of a simulation are a list of all tamping interventions during the useful life of the track and the course of the track geometry deviation at each track sector during the simulated time. On the basis of this data, fundamental features of the track geometry quality during the whole track useful life can be assessed. After a description of the simulation procedure and the enumeration of the input and output data, the approach is validated by means of a case study basing on real data of a French TGV line. In the case study, the long-term effects of an adaptive intervention threshold is investigated. With this aim two strategies are simulated, one with a constant and one with an adaptive intervention threshold. The advantages and drawbacks of each strategy are analyzed and compared with the help of pairwise comparison.