Behaviour of full-scale railway turnout sleepers from glue-laminated fibre composite sandwich structures

Manalo, Allan and Aravinthan, Thiru (2012) Behaviour of full-scale railway turnout sleepers from glue-laminated fibre composite sandwich structures. Journal of Composites for Construction, 16 (6). pp. 724-736. ISSN 1090-0268


An experimental study on the flexural and shear behaviour of the full-scale glue-laminated composite sandwich beams in three different layouts was conducted to evaluate the suitability of this construction system for railway turnout sleepers. The building block of this innovative beam is a novel composite sandwich structure made up of glass fibre composite skins and modified phenolic core material that has been specifically developed for civil engineering applications. The sandwich beam is produced by gluing layers of fibre composite sandwich structure together in flatwise (horizontal) and in edgewise (vertical) orientations. The glued sandwich beams with edgewise laminations presented appropriate strength and stiffness for replacement turnout timber sleeper. The mechanical properties of these glue-laminated sandwich beams are comparable with the existing timber turnout sleepers demonstrating that the innovative composite sandwich beam is a viable alternative sleeper material for railway turnouts. From this study, it is concluded that the glue-laminated composite sandwich structures have the potential to be used for replacement railway turnout sleepers. An enhanced understanding of the behaviour of fibre composite sandwich structures for potential civil engineering applications is also an outcome of this investigation.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - Department of Agricultural, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Date Deposited: 21 Apr 2013 05:45
Last Modified: 19 Aug 2014 01:18
Uncontrolled Keywords: Turnout sleepers; Fibre composites; Sandwich structures; Glue-laminated beams; Flatwise; Edgewise; Phenolic core.
Fields of Research : 09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090506 Structural Engineering
09 Engineering > 0912 Materials Engineering > 091202 Composite and Hybrid Materials
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970109 Expanding Knowledge in Engineering
E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970110 Expanding Knowledge in Technology
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)CC.1943-5614.0000307

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