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International Journal of Railway Technology
ISSN 2049-5358
IJRT, Volume 4, Issue 2, 2015
Finite Element-Discrete Element Coupling Strategies for the Modelling of Ballast-Soil Interaction
P. Taforel1, M. Renouf1, F. Dubois1 and C. Voivret2

1Université Montpellier, CNRS, LMGC, UMR 5508, Montpellier, France
2SNCF, Innovation and Research, Paris, France

Full Bibliographic Reference for this paper
P. Taforel, M. Renouf, F. Dubois, C. Voivret, "Finite Element-Discrete Element Coupling Strategies for the Modelling of Ballast-Soil Interaction", International Journal of Railway Technology, 4(2), 73-95, 2015. doi:10.4203/ijrt.4.2.4
Keywords: discrete element method, finite element method, hybrid FE-DE model, non-smooth contact dynamics, three dimensional railway track modelling, soil-ballast interaction, LMGC90.

Numerous modelling strategies have been used over the last decade to improve the understanding of the physical behaviour of the railway track system thanks to numerical simulation. In this context, discrete element (DE) methods are traditionally used to describe the granular behaviour of the ballast layer of the railway track whereas finite element (FE) methods are used to model the whole track system (soil and ballast) in which ballast is modelled as a continuous medium. If both approaches offer relevant modelling frameworks to study railway track, this work aims at going further by coupling those two approaches in an hybrid FE-DE model, making possible the improvement of the understanding of the global behaviour of the railway track. This paper aims to describe different aspects of the methodologies which are currently in LMGC90 software.

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