Read our recent paper published in “Infrastructures” in which we show how acceleration responses measured on an in-service train can be used for railway track loss-of-stiffness. The bogie filtered displacement (BFD) is obtained from the bogie vertical acceleration using a numerical integration method and a band-pass filter. The BFD is compared to the filtered track longitudinal profile and can be seen to contain the main features of the track profile. This is also experimentally confirmed using field measurements where an in-service Irish Rail train was instrumented using inertial sensors. The proposed algorithm is employed to find the BFDs from the bogie accelerations. A track level survey was also undertaken to validate the measurements. It is shown that the BFDs from several passes are in good agreement with the surveyed profile. Finally, the BFDs are numerically used to find track defects such as hanging sleepers. The mean of the BFDs obtained from two populations of train passes over a healthy and a damaged track are employed to detect the loss of stiffness at the subgrade layer. The effect of the train forward speed variation and measurement noise are also investigated.

The full paper is openly available here.