Smart maintenance and analysis of railway transport infrastructure (smart rail)

Kenneth Gavin, Irina Stipanovic, Marko Vajdić, Goran Puž, Velimir Sporčić

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Europe needs a safe and cost effective transport network to encourage movement of goods and people within the EU and towards major markets in the East. This is central to European transport, economic and environmental policy. Many parts of Europe's rail network were constructed in the mid–19th century, long before the advent of modern construction standards. Historic levels of low investment, poor maintenance strategies and the deleterious effects of climate change (for example scour of bridge foundations due to flooding and rainfall induced landslides) has resulted in critical elements of the rail network such as bridges, tunnels and earthworks being at significant risk of failure. The consequence of failures of major infrastructure elements is severe and can include loss of life, significant replacement costs (typically measured in millions of Euro's) and line closures which can often last for months. The SMART Rail project brings together experts in the areas of highway and railway infrastructure research, SME's and railway authorities who are responsible for the safety of national infrastructure. The goal of the project is to reduce replacement costs, delay and provide environmentally friendly maintenance solutions for ageing infrastructure networks. This will be achieved through the development of state of the art methods to analyze and monitor the existing infrastructure and make realistic scientific assessments of safety. These engineering assessments of current state will be used to design remediation strategies to prolong the life of existing infrastructure in a cost–effective manner with minimal environmental impact. This paper presents the organization, scope of work and project objectives of the SMART Rail project.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoad and Rail Infrastructure II
Subtitle of host publication2nd International Conference on Road and Rail Infrastructure, 7–9 May 2012, Dubrovnik, Croatia
EditorsStjepan Lakušić
Place of PublicationZagreb, Croatia
PublisherUniversity of Zagreb
ISBN (Print)978-953-6272-49-5, 978-953-6272-50-1
Publication statusPublished - 7 May 2012
Event2nd International Conference on Road and Rail Infrastructure, CETRA 2012 - Dubrovnik, Croatia
Duration: 7 May 20129 May 2012
Conference number: 2


Conference2nd International Conference on Road and Rail Infrastructure, CETRA 2012
Abbreviated titleCETRA


  • SMART Rail project
  • Degradation of the railway track
  • New rehabilitation methods


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