USA Banner

Official US Government Icon

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure Site Icon

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Site Notification

U.S. Department of Transportation U.S. Department of Transportation Icon United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation

Air-Borne Tie Sonar for Loaded Tie Deflection Measurements

Document Series
Research Results
Report Number
RR 22-14
Office
RPD-31
Subject Track
Keywords
Non-destructive evaluation, ultrasonic inspection, railroad tie deflection, non-contact inspection, ultrasonic ranging, center-binding, track

This report presents a non-contact ultrasonic technique to map the full-field surface deflection of railroad ties using known concepts of sonar-based distance measurements. Between September 2019 and July 2021, the University of California San Diego (UCSD) created a beam with six sonar sensors and performed field testing at the UCSD Rail Defect Testing Facility (RDTF) and at a Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) rail yard in San Diego, CA. The test results indicate the potential of this non-contact system to measure full-field tie deflections in three-dimensions (3D) and possibly detect defective tie-ballast support conditions such as center-binding.


Last updated: Friday, August 12, 2022