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International Journal of Railway Technology
IJRT, Volume 7, Issue 2, 2018
Slag Layers in Railway Foundations: Pilot Field Test Demonstration
M. Morata and C. Saborido
COMSA, Knowledge Management and R&D Department Barcelona, Spain
M. Morata, C. Saborido, "Slag Layers in Railway Foundations: Pilot Field Test Demonstration", International Journal of Railway Technology, 7(2), 21-40, 2018. doi:10.4203/ijrt.7.2.2
Keywords: steel slag, aggregate, railway, foundation, subballast, subgrade.
The use of aggregates with high abrasion resistance is essential to guarantee a good track performance during time; however, obtaining these high-quality aggregates is not always feasible at a reasonable cost. In this paper, SFS-Rail (steel furnace slag - rail) is presented as an alternative solution consisting of recycled aggregates from electric arc furnace slag aimed to be used in railway subgrade and subballast layers. First, a worldwide review of the state-of-the-art experiences and legislation in using ferrous slag in railway applications is carried out. Next, an introduction of SFS-Rail and their main benefits in terms of track performance and environmental sustainability is made based on both laboratory tests and a life cycle assessment (LCA). Results from laboratory tests are compared to existing European norms regulating the use of aggregates in track bed layers, proving their fulfilment while showing the improvements of SFS-Rail in terms of mechanical, physical and chemical resistance. Finally, the field tests in the Spanish infrastructure manager network and the monitoring campaign carried out are described, proving a good performance of the new material in terms of track settlement, rail deflection and stress distribution.
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