Sciences in Cold and Arid Regions ›› 2022, Vol. 14 ›› Issue (1): 23-31.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1226.2022.2022.20005.

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Numerical simulation of vibrational response characteristics of railway subgrades with insulation boards

ZiYu Wang1,2(),XianZhang Ling2,YingYing Zhao3,Feng Zhang2,LiHui Tian4   

  1. 1.School of Marine Science and Technology, Hainan Tropical Ocean University, Sanya, Hainan 572022, China
    2.School of Civil Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, Heilongjiang 150090, China
    3.School of Civil Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing, Jiangsu 211189, China
    4.School of Mining Engineering, Heilongjiang University of Science and Technology, Harbin, Heilongjiang 150022, China
  • Received:2020-02-03 Accepted:2020-12-25 Online:2022-02-28 Published:2022-03-03
  • Contact: ZiYu Wang
  • Supported by:
    the Jiangsu Planned Projects for Postdoctoral Research Funds(2021K534C);the Heilongjiang Natural Science Foundation(QC2017035)


This study presents a numerical method based on the surface temperature data and the ground temperature increase in Daqing for predicting temperature field distribution in the Binzhou Railway subgrade and analyzing the temporal and spatial distribution of freeze-thaw status of railway subgrade. The calibrated numerical method is applied to simulate the temperature field distribution and roadbed vibrational response of the railway subgrade with a thermal insulation layer at different seasons. The results show the following: (1) The thermal insulation layer can remarkably increase the soil temperature below it and maximum frost depth in the subgrade. (2) Thermal insulation can effectively reduce the subgrade vibration and protect it from frost damage. (3) Given that the strength requirements are met, the insulation layer should be buried as shallow as possible to effectively reduce the subgrade vibration response. The research findings provide theoretical support for the frost damage prevention of railway subgrades in seasonally frozen regions.

Key words: seasonally frozen regions, railway subgrade, insulation layer, vibrational response, frost depth

Figure 1

Sectional schematic of the subgrade of Binzhou Railway (unit: m)"

Figure 2

Surface temperature variation within one year in Daqing"

Table 1

Moisture content and thermal parameters of soils in the subgrade"

Materialsρ (kg/m3)Wλfλu (J/(m·°C·d)CfCu (J/(kg·°C)L (J/kg)
Silty clay1,92020%132,19094,0001,1741,47337,700
Weathered mudstone2,10018%157,900132,1901,0261,16619,850
Insulation board300%3,0243,0241,2501,250-

Table 2

Physical and mechanical parameters of railway subgrade soils"

Soil nameTemperature (℃)Natural gravity (kN/m)Maximum shear modulus (kPa)Poisson's ratio
BallastRoom temperature20.02.860E+050.25
Embankment fillRoom temperature19.52.930E+040.30
Foundation soil 1+120.02.540E+040.32
Foundation soil 2+118.02.540E+040.32

Figure 3

Comparing of simulated dynamic stress histories with field monitored data"

Figure 4

Subgrade temperature field contours with an insulation layer at various depth from the subgrade surface"

Figure 5

Temperature and depth of along the centerline of the railway subgrade without insulation layer for different seasons (month/day)"

Figure 6

Seasonal freeze-thaw process along the centerline of the railway roadbed"

Figure 7

Temperature vs. depth along the centerline of subgrade cross-section with insulation layer for different seasons"

Figure 8

Attenuation of subgrade dynamic stress with depth for cases with and without insulating layer"

Figure 9

Attenuation of subgrade acceleration with depth for cases with and without insulating layer"

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