Railroad Ballast Load Ranking Classification

by Gerald Patrick Raymond, (M.ASCE), Prof. of Civ. Engrg.; Queen's Univ., Kingston, Ontario, Canada,
Vishnu A. Diyaljee, (A.M.ASCE), Grad. Student in Civ. Engrg.; Queen's Univ., Kingston, Ontario, Canada,

Serial Information: Journal of the Geotechnical Engineering Division, 1979, Vol. 105, Issue 10, Pg. 1133-1153

Document Type: Journal Paper


An investigation into the permanent deformation and degradation ranking (i.e., load ranking) of railroad ballast subject to laboratory repeated loading at a stress level comparable with those below North American heavy freight axle loads is reported. Some field data are also presented. Plastic deformations, change in grading, and production of fines are statistically linearly correlated with the aggregate physical characteristics. In general, the most significant physical characteristic is the aggregate hardness as measured by an autogenous grinding process termed Mill Abrasion. As the stress level increases above that related to railroad freight aggregate toughness as measured by the Los Angeles Abrasion becomes more significant.

Subject Headings: Railroad ballast | Dead loads | Repeated loads | Aggregates | Load factors | Deformation (mechanics) | Freight transportation | Erosion | Los Angeles | California | United States

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