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For official Use Only

GOVERNMENT OF INDIA

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MINISTRY OF RAILWAYS

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Gu ide lin e s
For

Bla n k e t La ye r Pr ovision
On

Tr a ck For m a t ion
With Emphasis On

H e a vy Ax le Loa d Tr a in Ope r a t ion

Report No. RDSO/2007/GE : 0011

July 2007
Geo- technical Engineering Directorate

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Research Designs & Standards Organisation

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Lucknow 226011

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

INDEX

SL Synopsis Preface 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Introduction

Contents

Page 2 2 3 3 4 5 7

Historical Development on Blanket Layer Functions of Blanket Layer Existing Provisions of Blanket On Indian Railways Benchmarking - Provisions of Blanket in Ot her Railway Systems Field St udy On Ballast Penet rat ion I n Sub- Grade Formation On Indian Railways The Observations Of

6.

11

7.

Two Layers Syst em Of Form at ion Design Vis- - Vis Blanket Material Abrasion Value Consideration For Blanket Material Specifications Of Material For Blanket Layer Specifications of Geo- textile To Be Used Below Blanket Layer Specifications of Geo- grid To Be Used Below Ballast Layer Other Aspects of Formation Design Conclusions And Recommendations References Acknowledgement
Sketch- 1 : Sketch- 2 : Graph For Ext rapolat ion of d Value w.r.t . UI C Code 719 R, 1994 Graphical Represent at ion Of Two Layers Syst em Of Form at ion Top : Thickness Of Blanket Mat erial And Prepared Sub- Grade Table For Tw o Layers Syst em Of Blanket ing On Track Formation Enveloping Material Gradat ion Curves For Blanket

11

8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

12 13 14 15 16 18 18 18 19 20

Table- 2 : Sketch- 3 : Sketch- 4 :

21 23 24 25

Cross- sect ion Of Track Form at ion For Heavy Axle Load Freight Corridor

Annexure- 1 : Calculat ion Of Blanket Thickness Of Different Com binat ions For Axle Load, Speed, GMT and Soil Type As Per UIC Code 719R, 1994

Page 1

Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

SYN OPSI S

I ndian Railways have ent ered t he era of running of heavier axle load t rains and are planning t o const ruct Dedicat ed Freight Corridors . Provision of blanket layer on t op of form at ion is essent ial t o const ruct st able form at ion, suit able for running heavy axle loads. Under such circum st ances, t here is need t o st andardise specificat ions and t hickness of blanket layer t o cater heavy axle load train operation. This report has been prepared on t he basis of out com e of t he t wo in- house st udies done in Geo- t echnical Engineering Direct orat e during 2007- 08. One st udy is t it led as St udy of Higher Axle Load on Railway Form at ion vide report no. RDSO/ 2007/ GE- 1010 : April 2007. This report m ainly reviews design m et hodologies adopt ed on various world railway syst em s, e.g. Am erican Railw ays, European Railw ays, Aust ralian Railways et c. The second report is field st udy report , t it led St udy Of Ballast Penet rat ion wit h Different Types Of Soils on I ndian Railways vide report no. RDSO/2007/GE : SR- 0008 : July 2007. The present docum ent includes t he specificat ions & t hickness of blanket layer provided on t he form at ion, suit able for heavy axle load t rain operat ions wit h incorporat ion of new feat ures like geo- synt het ics, t wo layered concept of blanket layer & layer of prepared sub- grade, which also specifies addit ional filt er crit eria & Los Angles Abrasion Value for blanket m at erial. The exist ing inst ruct ions available on t he subj ect in various Guidelines will get superseded by t he provisions contained in this document. The proposed t hickness & specificat ions of blanket m at erial alongwit h design m et hodology of form at ion design m ay get revised subsequent ly on t he basis of out com e from research proj ect s being undert aken by Geo- technical Engineering Direct orat e of RDSO in collaborat ion wit h various Centres of Excellence.

P R E F A CE

This report is based on lit erat ure survey, experience gained and field observat ions done by RDSO. The views expressed in t he docum ent are subj ect t o m odificat ion from t im e t o t im e in light of future developments on the subject. This docum ent is t he propert y of RDSO and is m eant essent ially for official use. I t m ay not be loaned, reproduced in part , or in full or quot ed as an aut horit y wit hout t he perm ission of Director General, RDSO/Lucknow.

(Alok Kumar) Executive Director/Geo- technical Engineering


Research Designs And Standards Organisation, Lucknow

Page 2

Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

1.0

I N T R O D U CT I O N
Over t he years, increase in t raffic and speeds have placed a great er st ruct ural dem and on convent ional t rack, const ruct ed init ially t o cat er for m uch light er t raffic. Gradual im provem ent t o t rack support syst em however, rem ained confined t o t rack superst ruct ure, i.e. rails, sleepers, fast ening et c. The sub- st ruct ure below sleeper level remained practically unchanged. Provision of blanket on t op of form at ion has becom e a necessit y. Due t o non- provision of blanket , large st ret ches of t rack on I ndian Railways are having speed rest rict ions, costly maintenance practices as well have become an impediment in the introduction of higher speed and higher axle loads. Tradit ionally, blanket layer of single specified m at erial, as t hick as 1 m et re, w as recom m ended, which becom es very cost ly & difficult t o provide. Under t he circum st ances, t wo layer blanket syst em and use of geo- synt het ics have been st udied for use in top portion of formation from strength as well as economic considerations.

2.0
2.1

H I S T O R I CA L D E V E L O P M E N T S O N B L A N K E T L A Y E R
Provision of blanket layer on Indian Railways was stipulated in August- 1978 for the first t im e in t he Guidelines for Eart hwork in Em bankm ent s & Cut t ings of New Const ruct ion, Doubling & Conversion Proj ect s , where it was m ent ioned t hat t he dept h of blanket should norm ally be about 30cm in ordinary clayey soil. However, if form at ion soil is weak, a t hicker layer upt o 60cm m ay be necessar y depending on t he shear propert ies of t he form at ion soil. However, no t echnical j ust ificat ion is available for t his stipulation. I n subsequent reviews, Guidelines for Eart hwork in Railway Proj ect s was issued in May 1987, where t he m ent ion was - inspit e of t he present st at e of knowledge about t he soil behaviour under repet it ive loading, it is not possible t o account for t he drop of st rengt h under a part icular t raffic densit y and wheel loads. I n t he absence of a sure m et hod of working out t hickness of blanket , which would t ake int o account all t he fact ors and keeping t he fut ure growt h of t raffic densit ies and axle loads as w ell as t he experience wit h already exist ing t rouble- som e form at ions, one m et re t hick blanket layer of approved qualit y should be laid in case of all new const ruct ions . This subj ect - m at t er was furt her reviewed and as advised by Railway Board vide t heir let t er no. 90/ CEI I / SF/ 9, dat ed 12.4.1991, Para- 4.4 was revised and subsequent ly included in t he Guidelines for Eart hwork 1987 as under : Blanket and Sub- ballast : Blanket : Blanket m ay be required over t he form at ion where t he soil is of poor qualit y, rainfall is heavy and t raffic densit y is high, as t he absence of blanket in such cases can lead t o problem s in service, such as swelling or heaving of form at ion. Whet her t he blanket should be provided in a part icular lengt h and if so, it s t hickness ( which should not be less t han 30cm ) should be decided by t he Chief Engineer ( Const .) , in- charge of t he proj ect , duly t aking int o account t he t ype of soil, rainfall and densit y of t raffic and other factors relevant to the site conditions. Sub- ballast : I n order t o reduce t he effect of loads t ransm it t ed t o form at ion t hrough ballast and t o guard against t he possibilit y of ballast penet rat ion int o t he form at ion, it m ay be desirable t o provide a sub- ballast of 15cm dept h below t he ballast layer . The sub- ballast m ay com prise of locally available coarse m at erial so as t o serve as an effect ive m edium bet ween t he form at ion eart h and ballast st one. The need t o provide this sub- ballast may be decided by Chief Engineer (Const.) in- charge of t he proj ect .

2.2

2.3

2.4

This para was correct ed vide Correct ion Slip no. 2 t o t he above m ent ioned Guidelines and instructions regarding thickness of blanket were again modified in terms of Railway Board s let t er no. 94/ CE- I I / MB/ 2, dat ed 10.12.98. Perusal of t hese developm ent s since 1978 to 1991 indicates that : (i) Based on experience, necessit y was felt for provision of blanket and/ or subballast.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

(ii) 2.5

Assessm ent of t hickness of blanket m at erial was left on individual j udgm ent , leaving scope for wide variation.

Lit erat ure survey w as carried out t o know t he pract ices being followed in World Railways. Accordingly, St at e of- the- Art- Report on Sub- grade St ress and Design of Track St ruct ure ( C- 271) June- 1993 was published. I n t his report , it was suggest ed that (i) For sub grades consist ing of clayey soils, t ot al dept h of ballast & blanket can be worked out using Design Chart ( t aken from ORE D- 7I , RP12) for different axle loads and t hreshold st rengt h of soil. Threshold st ress of soil can be assum ed as 45% of UCC strength and For sub- grades consist ing of ot her t han clayey soils, dept h of const ruct ion will be designed based on Young s Modulus of Elast icit y, i.e. E- values of sub- grade soils, as done on European Railways. I t was also concluded t hat in case of cohesive sub- grades of im port ant lines carrying bulk of t he t raffic bot h passenger and goods, t here is need of blanket of coarse grained m at erial of about 100 cm t hickness t o keep t he m aint enance efforts within reasonable limits.

(ii)

(iii)

2.6

Furt her, in t he year 2000, Railway Board nom inat ed a com m it t ee of four SAG officers who had earlier served Geo- t echnical Engineering Direct orat e of RDSO t o m ake recom m endat ion for blanket ing on railway form at ion. I n August 2001, t he com m it t ee recom m ended provision of blanket t hickness based on various soil t ypes which has subsequent ly been adopt ed in RDSO s revised Guidelines For Eart hwork in Railway Proj ect s : July 2003 .

3.0 3.1

F U N CT I O N S O F B L A N K E T L A Y E R Role :
Blanket is a layer of coarse grained m at erial bet ween ballast and sub- grade, spread over ent ire w idt h. On som e ot her railw ay syst em s of t he world, t his layer is also called as sub- ballast. The important roles are : 1. I m proving t he bearing capacit y by m odifying t he st iffness and achieving a bet t er dist ribut ion of t ransm it t ed loads on t he sub- grade soil, t hus prevent ing ballast penetration into the formation. Reduction of induced stresses on the top of sub- grade to a tolerable level. To prevent m ud pum ping and fouling of ballast by upward m igrat ion of fine particles from the sub- grade. To prevent damage of sub- grade by ballast. Shedding surface water from the ballast and drain away from the sub- grade. Protection of sub- grade against erosion and climatic variations.

2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

3.2

Fu n ct io n s :
A blanket layer fulfils following important functions :

3 . 2 . 1 Pr im a r y Fu n ct io n :
St re ss Re du ct ion Funct ion - I t reduces t he t raffic induced st resses at t he bot t om of ballast layer t o a t olerable lim it on t op of sub- grade. This funct ion m ust be fulfilled t o avoid track foundation failures.

3.2.2 S e c o n d a r y F u n c t i o n :
i) Se pa r a t ion Fun ct ion : I t prevent s penet rat ion of ballast int o sub- grade and also prevents upward migration of fine particles from sub- grade into ballast.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

ii)

D r a ina ge Fu nct ion : I t should int ercept wat er com ing from ballast away from sub- grade and at the same time, permit drainage of water that is flowing upward from the sub- grade. Pre v e nt ion of M ud Pu m ping : I t prevent s m ud pum ping by checking at t rit ion of sub- grade particles by ballast.

iii)

The qualit y of blanket m at erial should be such t hat it is able t o carry out t he above functions satisfactorily. Various requirements to achieve above objectives are discussed in following paragraphs.

3 .3

Re q u ir e m e n t s T o Ach ie v e Fu n ct io n s One of t he m ost im port ant funct ions of provision of ballast layer under sleeper is t o reduce st resses. I t is neit her econom ical nor desirable from st abilit y considerat ions t o provide t he ent ire st ress reduct ion by ballast dept h alone. Hence, blanket layer of adequat e t hickness is required t o be provided t o reduce t he induced st resses t o an acceptable level at the top of sub- grade without undergoing its self failure. For achieving t his requirem ent , blanket m at erial serves as a st ruct ural m at erial, which should have adequat e st rengt h under dynam ic loads and vibrat ions, high resilient m odulus, reasonable plast ic st rain accum ulat ion charact erist ics under repeat ed wheel loads et c. Therefore, t he m at erial m ust be perm eable enough t o avoid any significant posit ive pore pressure build- up under repeat ed load. I t m ust consist of durable part icle and should not be sensit ive t o m oist ure cont ent . I t should also resist break- down and abrasion from the cyclic stresses produced by the train loading. From t he st udies of t he pract ices followed on advanced Railway Syst em s, it em erges t hat t he above dem ands are fulfilled, if specificat ions of blanket m at erial fulfil following criteria : i) ii) The material is coarse grained, hard and well graded. Maxim um percent age of fines ( part icle size less t han 75 m icrons) present in blanket m at erial is lim it ed upt o 10% t o 12% . Allowing m ore fines in blanket m at erial will lead t o plast icit y behaviour of blanket m at erial. Also, a m inim um percent age of fines are required t o give binding propert y t o t he blanket m at erial so that erosion of blanket material does not take place due to high intensity rainfall.

iii) Mat erial does not liquefy under vibrat ions caused by t rain m ovem ent and, therefore, is well graded. I t can be seen t hat t he above requirem ent s have been specified so t hat t he blanket m at erial is cohesion- less wit h adequat e gradat ion and perm eabilit y. I f m ore fines are permitted in blanket m at erial, t hen t he m at erial will st art behaving like a cohesive m at erial, having different st rengt h behaviour t han cohesion- less m at erial. Such materials are not able to dissipate pore water pressure under repeated cyclic loading of the trains, thus resulting into failure of blanket material.

4.0 4.1

EX I ST I N G PR O V I SI O N S O F BLAN KET O N I N D I AN RAI LW AY S U n su i t a b l e S o i l s f o r Co n st r u ct i o n :


Soils to be normally avoided are : a) Organic clays, organic silt s, peat , chalks, dispersive soils, poorly graded gravel and sand with uniformity coefficient (Cu) less than 2, b) Clays and silts of high plasticity (CH & MH) in top 3m of embankment.

4.2

D e p t h o f Bla n k e t La y e r :
Dept h of blanket t o be provided for axle loads upt o 22.5t for different t ypes of subgrade soils (minimum top one metre thickness) has been given as under :

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

( I n case m ore t han one t ype of soil exist s in t op one m et re, soil requiring higher thickness of blanket will govern)

a) Following soils shall not need any blanket : Rocky beds except t hose, which are very suscept ible t o weat hering, e.g. rocks consist ing of shales and ot her soft rocks, which becom e m uddy aft er com ing into contact with water. Well graded Gravel (GW) Well graded Sand (SW) Soils conforming to specifications of blanket material. Note : Soils having grain size curve lying on the right side of the enveloping curves for blanket m at erial like cobbles and boulders m ay/ m ay not need blanket . I n such cases, need of blanket and it s design should be done in consult at ion wit h RDSO.

b) Following soils shall need minimum 45cm thick Blanket : Poorly graded Gravel (GP) having Uniformity Coefficient more than 2. Poorly grade Sand (SP) having Uniformity Coefficient more than 2. Silty Gravel (GM) Silty Gravel Clayey Gravel (GM GC).

c) Following soils shall need minimum 60cm thick Blanket : Clayey Gravel (GC) Silty Sand (SM) Clayey Sand (SC) Clayey Silty sand (SM- SC) Note : The thickness of blanket on above type of soils shall be increased to 1 metre, if the plasticity index exceeds 7.

d) Following types of soils shall need minimum 1 metre thick Blanket : Silt with low plasticity (ML) Silty clay of low plasticity (ML- CL) Clay of low plasticity (CL) Silt of medium plasticity (MI) Clay of medium plasticity (CI) Rocks which are very susceptible to weathering Soils having fines passing 75 m icron sieve bet ween 5 & 12% , i.e. for soils wit h dual symbol, e.g. GP- GC, SW- SM, etc., thickness of blanket should be provided as per soil of second sym bol ( of dual sym bol) . For exam ple, if t he soil of t he sub- grade over which t he blanket is t o be provided is classified as GP- GC, blanket dept h for GC t ype of soil, i.e. 60 cm is to the provided. Use of geo- synt het ics can be considered at places where it is econom ical t o use in com binat ion wit h blanket as it reduces t he requirem ent of t hickness of blanket . I t m ay be particularly useful in cases of rehabilitation of existing unstable formation and in new const ruct ion where availabilit y of blanket m at erial is scarce. Use and select ion of geosynthetics should be done in consultation with RDSO. For heavier axle load t raffic above 22.5t and upt o 25t & above 25t upt o 30t , addit ional blanket t hickness of 30cm & 45cm respect ively, over and above as given above, of superior qualit y m at erial, shown as upper blanket layer in Sket ch "B" , should be provided.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

4.3

Sp e cif ica t io n s o f Bla n k e t M a t e r ia l :


Blanket material should generally conform to following specifications : a) It should be coarse, granular and well graded.

b) Skip graded material is not permitted. c) Non- plastic fines ( part icles of size less t han 75 m icron) are lim it ed m axim um t o 12%, whereas plastic fines are limited maximum to 5%.

d) The blanket material should have particle size distribution curve more or less within t he enveloping curves shown in Sket ch- B of RDSO docum ent GE: G- 1, July 2003 . The material should be well graded with Cu and Cc as under : Uniformity Coefficient Cu = D
60/D10 30) 2

> 4 (preferably > 7) / D60 x D10 should be within 1 and 3.

Coefficient of Curvature CC = (D e)

The m at erial for upper blanket layer, required for heavier axle load, shall be wellgraded sandy gravel or crushed rock within the enveloping curves for upper blanket layer as shown in Sketch- B of RDSO docum ent GE: G- 1, July 2003 .

5.0

B EN CH M A R K I N G - P R O V I S I O N S R A I LW A Y SY ST EM S Eu r o p e a n R a i l w a y s ( U I C) -

OF

B LA N K ET

IN

O T H ER

5.1

5 . 1 . 1 Pr o v isio n s :

Where, e = E = a = b = c = d = f = g =

Total depth of ballast & blanket Factor depending upon quality class of soil used in prepared subgrade Factor depending on UIC groups based on GMT Factor depending on type & length of sleeper Factor depending on different working conditions on existing lines Factor depending on axle load of hauled vehicle Factor depending on speed of train Fact or depending on inclusion of geo- textile based on qualit y class of prepared sub- grade.

Page 7

Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

The values of the above factors, as given in the UIC- 719R code are as under : E = 0.70 m For QS1 soils used as prepared sub- grade E = 0.55 m For QS2 soils used as prepared sub- grade E = 0.45 m For QS3 soils used as prepared sub- grade (Thickness of prepared sub- grade varies from 35 cm to 50 cm) a a a a = = = = 0 - 0.05m - 0.10m - 0.15m For For For For UIC groups 1 & 2 (or lines where speed>160 km for all UIC groups) UIC group 3 & 4 UIC groups 5, 6 & 7, 8, 9 with passengers UIC groups 7, 8, 9 without passengers

b=0 b = (2.50- L) / 2 c = - 0.05 m d=0 d = 0.05 m d = 0.12 m f=0 f = 0.05 m f = 0.10 m

For wooden sleepers of length 2.60m For concrete sleepers of length L (b in m, L in m) For difficult working condition For 200 kN axle load For 225 kN axle load For 250 kN axle load For speed < 160 kmph For speed > 160 kmph for sub- grade of QS2 class For speed > 160 kmph for sub- grade of QS1 class

g = + Track bed must include a geotextile for soil of QS1 & QS2 class Soil Quality Class QS0 , QS1 , QS2 & QS3 are defined in UIC Code are as under : Soil Type (Geo- technical Classification) 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 1.1 1.2 Organic soils Soft soils cont aining m ore t han 15% fines (1) wit h high moisture content: therefore unsuitable for compaction. Thixotropic soils
(2)

Soil Quality Class QS0

(e.g. quick clay)

Soils containing soluble material (e.g. rock salt or gypsum) Contaminated ground (e.g. industrial waste) Mixed material/organic soils
(2) (1)

Soft soils cont aining m ore t han 40% of fines soils classified under 0.2) Chalk wit h d <1.7t/m3 and high friability Marl Weathering shale
(1)

( except for

QS1

Rocks which are very susceptible to weathering, e.g. :

1.3 1.4

Soils cont aining 15% t o 40% of fines classified under 0.2) Chalk with

( except for soils

QS1

(3)

Rocks which are moderately susceptible to weathering, e.g.


d

<1.7t/m3 and low friability

Un- weathered shale

1.5

Soft rock e.g. Micro- deval wet (MDE)>40 and Los Angles (LA) > 40
(1) (4)

2.1 2.2

Soils containing from 5 to 15% of fines

QS2 6)

Uniform soil containing less than 5% of fines (1) (Cu


(1)

Moderate hard rock, e.g. : If 25<MDE 40 and 30< LA 40 3.1 Well graded soils containing less than 5% of fines Hard rock, e.g. : If MDE 25 and LA 30 QS3

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

i.

These percentages are calculated from particle size distribution analysis undertaken on m at erial passing a 60 m icron sieve. The percent ages indicat ed have been rounded down ( part icles vary slight ly vary from one Railway t o anot her) ; t hey m ay be increased by upt o 5% if sufficient ly represent at ive num ber of sam ples are taken. Certain Railways sometimes include these soils in quality class QS1 .

ii.

iii. These soils can com e under qualit y class QS2 if t he hydro- geological and hydrological conditions are good. iv. These soils can com e under qualit y class QS3 if t he hydro- geological and hydrological conditions are good.

5 . 1 . 2 Sp e cif ica t io n s o f Bla n k e t M a t e r ia l :


i) ii) Blanket m at erial m ust be a w ell graded sandy- gravel m at erial ( Cu> 6 and Cc between 1 & 3). It should be sufficiently durable e.g. Los Angeles value less than 20 or 25.

iii) Some railways require sandy gravel to contain at least 30% of crushed stone. iv) It should satisfy Terzaghi Filter criteria with sub- grade soil. v) I f blanket layer is in cont act wit h fine grained ( silt y or clayey) sub- grade, it should have about 20% fine sand (particle size less than 0.2 mm).

5.2

P r a ct i ce s o f Am e r ica n R a i lw a y s American Railway Engineering and Maint enance- of- way Associat ion ( AREMA) Manual of Railway Engineering 2002 recom m ends use of 12 inches ballast and 12 inches subballast on main track. Use of soils with Plasticity Index > 12 for a depth of 4 feet below sub- ballast should be avoided, if possible.

5.2.1 A R E M A S p e c i f i c a t i o n f o r S u b - b a l l a s t :
i) ii) Mat erial t o be used is sim ilar t o highway bases and sub- bases such as cr ushed stone, natural or crushed gravel, natural or manufactured sands, crushed slag etc. Sub- ballast shall be granular material so graded as to prevent penetration into subgrade and penetration of ballast into sub- ballast zone.

iii) Filter principles should be used in drainage to the grading of sub- grade. iv) Maximum size of sub- ballast should not exceed maximum size of ballast. v) Not more than 5% of the sub- ballast should pass the no. 200 sieve (60 micron).

5.2.2 F i l t e r Cr i t e r i a R e q u i r e m e n t :
The two resulting separation gradation for drainage filter criteria are : D 15 (filter blanket) < 5 x D85 (sub- grade) D 50 (filter blanket) < 25 x D50 (sub- grade) (Ratio of D50 in range of 9 to 30) Crit eria ensures blocking t he upward m ovem ent of part icles at t he coarsest end of protected soil (D85). Additional criteria to ensure adequate permeability to drain sub- grade D 15 (filter) < 20 x D15 (sub- grade) (Ratio of D15 in range of 6 to 18)

5.3

B l a n k e t / Ca p p i n g L a y e r I n A u s t r a l i a n R a i l w a y s
Aust ralian Railway Track Corporat ion provides 15 cm blanket / capping m at erial over 0.5 m of sub- grade having CBR values m ore than 8 or over 1 m of sub- grade if its CBR is in range of 3 to 8 as shown in Figure below :

Page 9

Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

5.3.1 General Requirements of Blanket Material :


Mat erial proposed for capping shall be a well graded nat ural or art ificially blended gravel/ soil. I t shall have sufficient fines t o perm it it t o be com pact ed t o high densit ies by st at ic or vibrat ory st eel- t yred rollers or by ballast ed pneum at ic- t yred rollers. Mat erials such as nat ural ridge gravel free from veget able m at t er, ripped sandst ones wit h low clay cont ent and crushed and blended t ough, durable rock or slag, have been found to meet material properties of this specification.

5.3.2 Material Properties :


Nat ural gravels m ay be com bined t o provide m at erial which conform s t o t his specificat ion. Crushed rock shall include such added m at erial as necessary for t he combined material to satisfy the requirements of this specification.

5.3.3 Particle Size Distribution :


Material shall be well graded with typical particle size distribution as follows :
AS Sieve 53 mm 37.5 mm 26.5 mm 19.0 mm 9.5 mm 4.75 mm 2.36 mm 0.075 mm Percentage Passing Nominal Size (20mm) 100 100 100 95- 100 30- 80 6- 10

5.3.4 Atterberg Limits :


Liquid Limit Plastic Limit Plasticity Index Linear Shrinkage : : : : Maximum 30 (35 for arid areas) Maximum 20 2 - 10 (2 - 15 for arid areas) Maximum 3%

5.3.5 Maximum Dry Density : Minimum 2.0 t/cum

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

5.3.6 Soaked CBR : Minim um 50% , det erm ined on m at erial com pact ed t o 95% ( m in.) of
Maximum Dry Density

6.0 6. 1

FIELD STU D Y ON BALLAST PEN ETRATI ON I N SU B- GRAD E FORM ATI ON ON I N D I AN RAI LW AYS T H E OBSERVATIONS

OF

A field st udy was undert aken by Geo- t echnical Engineering Direct orat e of RDSO t o assess t he perform ance of form at ions where blanket m at erial has been and
has not been provided. I n t his effort , behaviour of new t rack for m at ions on proj ect s of new lines, doublings and gauge conversion on various Zonal Railways has been studied. Track at t ent ions, ballast penet rat ion, GMT and several ot her im port ant dat a have been collected during monitoring of track formations.

6.2

RDSO t eam s collect ed dat a for t ot al 21 proj ect s on various Zonal Railways, out of which 10 sect ions ( 44 nos. of observat ions) were blanket ed sect ions and 11 sect ions (54 nos. of observations) were non- blanketed sections of different construction projects on Indian Railways. Dat a collect ed have been com piled & analyzed and a report on St udy Of Ballast Penet rat ion wit h different Types Of Soils on I ndian Railways vide Report No. RDSO/ 2007/ GE : SR- 0008 : July 2007 has been prepared. Based on analysis of dat a collected, main conclusions of the report are : I t is observed from t he st udy of dat a collect ed t hat provision of blanket on subgrade is necessary as it reduces t rack m aint enance effort s and ballast penet rat ion in form at ion get s reduced. Thus, it reduces cost of t rack m aint enance and result s in smooth running of fast and heavier traffic. I t has been observed t hat ballast penet rat ion and num ber of t rack at t ent ions are alm ost nil even on sub- grades const ruct ed wit h fine- grained soils where t hickness of blanket provided was less t han t he required t hickness as prescribed in Guidelines For Eart hwork I n Railw ay Proj ect s, GE : G- 1, July 2003 . Therefore, earlier recom m ended t hickness of blanket m at erial based on t ype of sub- grade soil can be reduced substantially. Slight deviat ion t o t he prescribed values of Uniform it y Coefficient ( Cu) for blanket material can also be permitted, as is evident from the study. Slight deviat ion t o t he prescribed values of Coefficient of Curvat ure ( Cc) for blanket material can also be permitted, as is evident from the study. I t is observed t hat ballast penet rat ion in sub- grades const ruct ed wit h fine- grained soils ( Soils having m ore t han 50% part icles passing t hrough 75 m icron I .S. sieves) is m ore compared to penetration in formations constructed with coarse- grained soils. Conclusions of t his field st udy clearly indicat e t hat blanket layer is required even for present axle loads, as ballast penet rat ion has been observed on all t he form at ions where blanket has not been provided and m ore im port ant ly, t here is good scope of reduct ion in present ly prescribed t hickness of blanket layer on sub- grade t op on I ndian Railways wit h suit able revisions in t he exist ing provisions on t he subj ect in RDSO s document - Guidelines For Eart hwork I n Railway Proj ect s, GE : G- 1, July 2003 .

6.3

6.3.1

6.3.2

6.3.3 6.3.4 6.3.5

6.4

7.0

TW O LAYERS SYSTEM OF FORM ATI ON DESI GN VI S- - V I S BLAN KET MATERIAL


From t he observat ions of provisions of various World Railway Syst em s, it is evident t hat t here is requirem ent & pract ice of not allowing poor soils in t op one m et re t hickness of sub- grade and st rengt hening of about t op 1 m et re of form at ion is necessary with material of superior quality like blanket material.

7.1

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

7.2

As on dat e on I ndian Railways, one m et re blanket layer is being provided wit h single t ype of m at erial having superior specificat ions, which m any a t im es is available at very high cost , t hus it proves t o be uneconom ical. Also, dispensat ion t o it s provisions is normally granted by Railway Board on the requests of Zonal Railways. I t has also been observed t hat AREMA recom m ends for not using soil having plast icit y index m ore t han 12 in t op 4 feet t hickness of sub- grade, UI C provides layer of prepared sub- grade of 35 cm t o 50 cm of bet t er m at erial and Aust ralian Railways provide 50 cm to 1 metre of sub- grade having CBR value more than 8. Sim ilar t o AAR, UI C or Aust ralian Railways, t ot al requirem ent of blanket layer can be provided wit h t wo t ypes of m at erials, upper layer which is in cont act of ballast can be of superior qualit y and lower layer which is in cont act wit h sub- grade can be wit h specifications such that poor material should not appear in top portion of sub- grade.

7.3

7.4

The design m et hod given in AAR report no. R- 898, Oct ober 1996 seem s t o be quit e a rat ional m et hod, which det erm ines t hickness of granular layer based on Axle Load, Speed, GMT, Soil t ypes et c. I t requires field m easurem ent of soil param et ers and design calculat ions every t im e when new form at ion is required t o be const ructed. However, provisions regarding sub- ballast layer given in AREMA Manual do not seem t o be based on t he m et hod given in AAR Report no. R- 898; t herefore, t hese are not being presently considered for adoption on Indian Railways. UI C provisions as given in UI C Code 719 are syst em at ic & st ream lined; covering all aspect s, e.g. Axle Load, Speed, GMT, Sub- grade Type et c. Recom m endat ions have been m ade in UI C Code 719 for axle loads in range of 20 t o 25 t onne. Since form at ion design for Heavy Axle Load Freight Corridors is t o be done for 32.5 t onne axle loads, ext rapolat ion has been done for 30 t onne and 32.5 t onne axle loads from UI C provisions. These are shown in Sket ch- 1. Keeping in view t he ot her relevant fact ors, such as Axle Loads, Speed, GMT, Sleeper Lengt h suit able for I ndian Railways, det ail calculat ions of blanket t hickness for various soils, based on UI C pract ices have been carried out and are illustrated in Annexure- 1. Proposed t hickness of blanket m at erial & prepared sub- grade and t ype of sub- grade alongwit h soil t ypes as per I S Classificat ion belonging t o various Soil Cat egory SQ have been given in Table- 2 & also shown in Sket ch- 2. Soil Cat egories SQ1, SQ1 & SQ3 have been m odified slight ly from UI C pract ices t o suit I ndian condit ions & BI S Classification system. Prepared sub- grade should be preferable wit h SQ3 soils, having fines less t han 12% . I f prepared sub- grade is of SQ1 or SQ2 t ype soils, geo- t ext ile layer shall be provided at junction of bottom of blanket layer & top of prepared sub- grade. Proposed t ypical profile for Heavy Axle Load Freight Corridor, showing t hickness of prepared sub- grade, blanket layer over different t ypes of sub- grade has been illustrated in Sketch- 4. The recom m ended t hickness and specificat ions of blanket m at erial are based on UI C docum ent which is for axle loads upt o 25 T. Blanket specificat ions suit able for furt her higher axle loads will require m ore st udy/ visit and experience of foreign railway systems, where 30T or higher axle load trains are running.

7.5

7.6

7.7

7.8

7.9

8.0
8.1

ABRASION VALUE CONSIDERATION FOR BLANKET MATERIAL


On I ndian Railways, specificat ions of blanket m at erial are defined in t erm s of part icle size gradat ion, m axim um percent of fines, Uniform it y Coefficient Cu and Coefficient of Curvat ure Cc. How ever, t hese specificat ions do not ensure sufficient hardness of t he m at erial as blanket m at erial is subj ect ed t o high st resses im posed by t rain loads. BI S Code I S : 2386 Part I V- 1963 describes t he Los Angles Abrasion Value as a m easure of resistance to wear.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

8.2

Para 2( i) of Annexure I I of Guidelines for Eart hwork in Railw ay Proj ect s, May 1987 specifies t hat blanket m at erial should be coarse and granular. However, vide Railway Board s let t er no. 95/ W1/ Genl/ 0/ 39, dat ed 09.10.96, t his para was am ended as Blanket m at erial should be coarse, granular and from hard rock. Lat er, t his am endm ent was not included in revised Guidelines for Eart hwork in Railway Proj ect s, GE: G- 1, July 2003 ; probably due t o t he reason t hat hardness of t he m at erial is not quantified and may lead to ambiguity to field engineers. UI C Code 719 R, 1994 m ent ions t hat blanket m at erial should be sufficient ly durable and its Los Angles Abrasion value should be less than 20 or 25. American Railways, as per AREMA Manual 2002, do not specify any value as a measure of hardness. However, Para- 9.1 of The ASTM D1241 St andard Specificat ions for Aggregat e Layers for Roads in t he reference book on Track Geo- t echnology and Subst ruct ure Managem ent by E. T. Selig is used as a basis for sub- ballast by Nort h American Railroads. The coarse aggregat e ( > 2m m ) m ust have m axim um loss in t he LAA t est using ASTM C131 of 50. Generally higher LAA value is accept able for sub- ballast t han for ballast because t he t raffic st resses are low er and t he sm aller size and broader gradat ion makes particle contact stresses much lower than in ballast.

8.3 8.4

8.5

As per Specificat ions of Track Ballast , GE : I RS- 1, June 2004, maximum abrasion value of 30 has been specified which is relaxable upt o 35 in except ional cases by CTE & CAO(C) on techno- economic grounds. I n order t o avoid chance of soft m at erial t o be select ed as blanket m at erial, suit able LA Abrasion value as a measure of hardness/wear resistance should be specified. Based on above discussion, blanket material with maximum Los Angles Abrasion value of 40 may be suitable & is being prescribed for adoption on Indian Railways.

9.0
9.1

SPECIFICATIONS OF MATERIAL FOR BLANKET LAYER


Specificat ions of t he m at erial for blanket layer over prepared sub- grade should be such t hat it is well- graded sandy gravel layer of adequat e hardness. Part icles size gradat ion curve should be m ore or less wit hin Enveloping Curves of blanket m at erial as shown in Sketch- 3 & Grading Percentages within the range given in Table- 1 and should also have following criteria satisfied : i) Cu > 7 and Cc between 1 and 3. ii) Fines (passing 75 microns) : 3% to 10%. iii) Los Angeles Abrasion value < 40%. I n except ional cases on t echnical and econom ic considerat ions, LAA value m ay be relaxed upto 45% by CTE on Open Line & by CAO/C in construction projects. Table- 1 : Grading Percentage of Blanket Material SL 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. IS Sieve Size 40 mm 20 mm 10 mm 4.75 mm 2 mm 600 micron 425 micron 212 micron 75 micron Percent Passing (by weight) 100 80 - 100 65 - 85 40 - 70 25 - 50 12 - 35 10 - 30 5 - 22 3 - 10

9.2

Blanket m at erial should sat isfy filt er crit eria in respect of sub- grade soil, which is t o be prot ect ed t o avoid upward m igrat ion of sub- grade soil causing fouling of ballast . Bot h UI C Railways and AREMA also specify t he filt e r cr it e ria re quire m e n t s. The t wo resulting separation gradations for drainage filter criteria are :

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

Criteria 1 : D15 (filter blanket) < 5 x D85 (sub- grade) Criteria 2 : D15 (filter) > 4 to 5 D15 (sub- grade) Criteria 3 : D50 (filter blanket) < 25 x D50 (sub- grade) Criteria 1 causes part icles at t he coarsest end of t he prot ect ed soil ( D 85) t o be blocked by particles at the finest end of the filter (D15). Criteria 2 is an additional criteria to ensure adequate permeability to drain sub- grade. Criteria 3 is only a suggest ive provision which helps t o avoid gap- graded filt ers and creat e a filt er gradat ion t hat is som ewhat parallel t o t hat of prot ect ed soil. I t m ay be relaxed in except ional cases by CTE on Open Line & by CAO/ C in const ruct ion proj ects on technical and economic considerations.

10.0
10.1

SPECIFICATIONS OF GEO- TEXTILE TO BE USED BELOW BLANKET LAYER


Woven Geo- textile : The Woven Geo- t ext ile shall be of woven polypropylene m ult ifilam ent t ype geot ext ile. The individual multifilament yarns are woven together into a stable fabric structure with a superior com binat ion of m echanical and hydraulic propert ies. The product shall have excellent resist ance t o biological and chem ical environm ent s norm ally found in soils and shall be stable against short- term exposure to ultraviolet radiation. The Woven Geo- t ext ile shall be suit able for applicat ions involving funct ions of separat ion, st abilizat ion and filt rat ion. The Woven Geo- t ext ile shall conform t o t he property values listed below : SL I 1 2 3 II 1 2 3 4 III 1 2 Property Test Method Value (MARV)

Polymer Composition, Structure and Physical Properties Polymer Structure Mass per Unit Area Mechanical Properties Tensile Strength Elongat ion at Designat ed Peak Tensile Load Trapezoid Tearing Strength Warp Weft Warp Weft Warp Weft 55 kN/m 42 kN/m 20 % 20 % 1100 N 750 N 600 N 150 microns 32 l/m2 /s Polypropylene Woven wit h m ult ifilam ent yarn in both warp and weft directions ASTM D 3776 240 g/m2

IS : 1969

ASTM D 4533 ASTM D 4833 ASTM D 4751 ASTM D 4491

Puncture Strength Hydraulic Properties Apparent opening size Wat er Flow Rat e Norm al To The Plane

1. 2. 3.

Values list ed are m inim um average roll values except for I I - 2 and I I I - 1, which are maximum average roll values. The elongat ions report ed are t he act ual fabric elongat ions at t he designat ed peak tensile load measured over a gauge length of 100 mm. The m anufact urer shall subm it cert ificat e for all param et ers specified for polypropylene m ult ifilam ent woven geo- t ext ile for every bat ch of 5000 sqm polypropylene multifilament woven geo- textile to be supplied and used at site.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

10.2

Non- Woven Geo- textile : (Ref : State- of- the- Art Report on Use of Geo- textile on Indian Railways, 1995) : The geo- t ext ile shall be of non- woven m echanically bonded t ype com prising 100% polypropylene cont inuous fibres. Geo- t ext ile m anufact ured from st aple ( short ) fibres or heat bonded shall not be used. The geo- t ext ile shall have a high level UV st abilizat ion. All r equirem ent s concerning UV- resist ance, oxidat ion, hydrolysis, chem ical resist ance m icrobiological resist ance and environm ent al com pat ibilit y have t o be m et as per relevant IS/European Norms. (1) Composition : Polypropylene (2) Mode of manufacture : Non- Woven, Needle punched (3) Thickness of fabric : 2.5 mm at 2 kPa (4) Water permeability : More than that of the soil to be drained (5) Weight : 300 gm/m2 and above (6) Elongation at break : 40% to 70% (7) Tensile strength : 20 kN/m (minimum) (8) Pore size : 120 Micron (9) Equivalent opening : 40 to 75 micron size (EOS) 90 (10) Thermal stability : 0 C to 100 C (11) Roll width : 4.5 m for BG single line (12) Roll length : As per sit e requirem ent t o suit workabilit y with minimum joints.

10.3

These specificat ions are only suggest ive in nat ure and final St andardised Specificat ions of geo- textile will be finalised & issued by RDSO subsequent ly aft er m ore st udies and field visits etc.

1 1 . 0 SPECI FI CAT I O N S OF GEO- GRI D T O BE U SED BELOW BALLAST LAYER


(Ref : Report of Vijayawada Division of South Central Railway for Formation Treatment)

11.1

The r einforcing elem ent shall be a geo- gr id m anufact ur ed in accor dance wit h a Qualit y Managem ent Sy st em w hich com plies wit h t he r equir em ent s of BS EN I SO 9001: 2000. The Cont ract or/ Supplier / Vendor shall pr ovide evidence t hat t he m anufact ur er's Qualit y Assur ance Sy st em has been cert ified t o confor m w it h BS EN ISO 9001:2000 by an external authenticating authority. The r einfor cing elem ent shall be a geogr id m anufact ur ed fr om polypr opylene sheet , or ient ed in t w o dir ect ions so t hat t he r esult ing r ibs shall have a high degr ee of molecular orientation, which continues through the area of integral node. The r ibs of reinfor cing elem ent shall be of rect angular cr oss sect ion in bot h longit udinal and t ransver se dir ect ions wit h a t ypical m inim um r ib t hickness of 1.5m m . Geo- grid aperture size shall be approximately 61mm x 61 mm. The t ypical st r engt h of t he nodes bet w een t he longit udinal and t ransver se r ibs, shall be not less t han 95% of t he Qualit y Cont r ol St r engt h in bot h longit udinal and 't r ansver se directions. Reinfor cing elem ent shall be inert t o all chem icals nat ur ally found in soils and shall have no solvent s at am bient t em perat ur e. It shall not be suscept ible t o hydr olysis, shall be resist ant t o aqueous solut ions of salt s, acids and alkalis, shall be non- biodegr adable and shall have a m inim um of 2% finely divided car bon black, as det er m ined by BS 27S2: Part 4: Met hod 452B: 1993, well dispersed in the polymer matrix to inhibit attack by ultra violet light.

11.2

11.3

11.4

11.5

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

11.6

Technical Specifications :
Parameter/Description Polymer (1) Minimum Carbon Black (2) Roll Width Roll Length 1 Unit Weight Roll Weight Tult (3) Load At 2% Strain (3) Load At 5% Strain (3) Approx Strain At Tult Junction Strength (4) Tult (3) Load At 2% Strain (2) Load At 5% Strain (3) Approx Strain At Tult Junction Strength (4) Unit % in m Kg/Sqm Kg KN/m KN/m KN/m % % KN/m KN/m KN/m % % Limits PP 2 3.80 50 0.33 65 30 11 22 9 95 30 12 25 9 95

Quality Control Strength Longitudinal -

Quality Control Strength Transverse -

Notes : 1) PP denotes Polypropylene. 2) Carbon black inhibit s at t ack by UV light . Det er m ined in accordance wit h BS 2782 part 4 Method 452B : 1993. 3) Det er m ined in accor dance w it h BS EN I SO 10319 1996 and as a low er 95% confidence limit in accordance with ISO 2602:1980 (BS 2846 part 2 : 1981). 4) Deter m ined in accordance w it h GRI t est m et hod GG2- 87 and expr essed as % of Quality Control Strength. 5) The Geo- gr id shall be iner t t o all chem icals nat ur ally found in soils and shall have no solvent s at am bient t em per at ur e. I t shall not be suscept ible t o hydr olysis and shall be r esist ant t o aqueous solut ions of salt s, acids and alkalis and shall be nonbiodegradable. 6) The Goe- gr id shall be m anufact ur ed in accor dance w it h a qualit y Managem ent system which complies with the requirements to BS EN ISO 9001:2000. 7) All quoted dimensions and values are typical unless stated otherwise. 11.8 Specifications of Geo- synthetics will be revised from time to time by G. E. Directorate of RDSO in t erm s of t echnological advancem ent s/ research/ experience on t he subj ect and also based on adopt ion of t he product s by various world railways alongwit h t heir suitability for Indian conditions. Vendors for all geo- synthetics items (geo- textiles & geo- grid etc.) will be developed and approved by RDSO. Subsequent ly, Zonal Railways will be procuring t hese it em s based on specifications & vendor list issued/approved by G. E. Directorate of RDSO.

11.9

1 2 .0

O T H E R I M P O R T A N T A S P E CT S O F F O R M A T I O N D E S I G N
Ot her t han blanket t hickness & specificat ions, general design and const ruct ion provisions for const ruct ion of st able form at ion have been given in Guidelines for Eart hwork in Railway Proj ect s, No. GE : G- 1, July 2003 . For quick reference, following sum m arised im port ant point s should be kept in m ind while planning & execut ing t he construction work :

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

12.1

For banks higher t han 6 m et res, suit able slope st abilit y analysis, reinforcem ent of slopes, plant at ion of deep root grass and t oe wall const ruct ion shall be suit ably adopted. For base- soil/sub- st rat a wit h low bearing capacit y ( < 75 kPa) , st rengt hening of subst rat a shall be carried out wit h suit able t echniques, like replacem ent of clayey soil wit h sand, provision of stone columns, geo- grid layers and lime/cement grouting. Soft sub- soil st rat a having undrained cohesion ( Cu) < 25kPa or N- value ( det erm ined from St andard Penet rat ion Test ) < 4 will require ground im provem ent before const ruct ion of em bankm ent . Em bankm ent m ay require t o be const ruct ed in st ages wit h adequat e wait ing period giving due allowance for consolidat ion of soft sub- soil. Preloading t echnique or provision of Vert ical Sand Drains or PVC drains m ay be provided for fast & complete consolidation of soft compressible strata. Poor soils, i.e. soils having CBR < 4, organic soils, CH & MH t ype of soils should not be used for construction of embankment. I n case of high bank on soft sub- soil, flat t er slope wit h berm / sub- bank should be provided after slope stability analysis. Adequat e drainage arrangem ent should be m ade by providing cross slope at t op of formation and side drains/catch water drains, wherever required. Adequat e erosion cont rol m easures on slopes of bank & cut t ing should be ensured by vegetation on slopes with deep- rooted Vetiver grass & geo- jute textile, if necessary. Adequat e com pact ion should be ensured in each layer of eart hwork & blanket , as specified in RDSO s Guidelines of Eart hwork in Railway Proj ect s- July 2003 . For good qualit y form at ion, m inim um value of Deform at ion Modulus EV2 of 120 MPa ( m easured by second loading in Plate Load Test) should be ensured at top of blanket layer. At locat ions, where t he wat er t able is high and t he fill soil is fine- grained, it m ay be desirable t o provide a granular layer of about 30 cm t hickness at t he base, above subsoil across the full width of formation. Sandwich t ype of const ruct ion m ay be adopt ed for const ruct ion of em bankm ent s wit h cohesive soils having very low permeability (less than 10 2 cm/sec) and where height of bank is greater than 3m. In such situations, a layer of coarse sand (Cu>2) of about 2030 cm thickness should be provided at bank height intervals of 2m to 3m. St able slopes and adequat e drainage arrangem ent s in cut t ing areas should be provided as per det ails given in Guidelines for Cut t ing in Railway Form at ions - No. GE : G- 2, August 2005 . For high banks at t he approaches of rail bridges, providing approach slabs and geogrid layer shall be also considered and adopted. I n doubling & Gauge Conversion proj ect s, new eart hwork should be properly m erged with existing formation after adequate benching over existing slopes. Re infor ce d Ea r t h Construction m ay be adopt ed wherever st eep slope/ vert ical wall const ruct ion is required due t o space const raint or ot herwise. I n t his regard, RDSO s report on Concept and Design of Reinforced Eart h St ruct ures, No. GE- R- 63, June 2005 should be consulted. I n order t o have sat isfact ory perform ance of form at ions for ver y long durat ion and running of furt her heavier axle loads in fut ure, it is advisable t o use ge o- grid & ge otextile in t he t op port ion of form at ion. Provision of geo- grid at ballast & blanket int erface can reduce blanket requirem ent by 30% keeping m inim um blanket t hickness of 15 cm . I n case, fine- grained soils are used in t op of sub- grade, a geo- t ext ile should be provided at blanket & sub- grade interface. For m a t ion W idt h : Present st andard widt h of form at ion of em bankm ent is 6.85 m for single BG line. This appears t o bare m inim um t aking ballast side slope of about 1H: 1V and cess width of 90 cm. Present ballast side slope of 1H : 1V gets disturbed frequently by train vibrations and requires frequent maintenance to make it up to correct profile. Som e advanced Railway Syst em s ( like AAR) adopt ballast side slope of 2H: 1V and cess widt h of 120 cm ( Japanese Railw ay) . Cess widt h of 90 cm is also inadequat e especially at high bank locations to move men, materials and machineries.

12.2

12.3

12.4 12.5 12.6 12.7 12.8

12.9

12.10

12.11

12.12 12.13 12.14

12.15

12.16

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

Therefore, it is desirable t o increase st andard form at ion widt h of BG em bankm ent for new lines upto 8.5 m for ballast side slope of 2H:1V and cess width of 120cm

13.0
13.1

CO N CLU S I O N S A N D R ECO M M EN D A T I O N S
Requirem ent of sub- struct ure layer bet ween ballast & sub- grade for higher axle load & weak sub- grade is of t he order of one m et re or so. Provision of blanket layer wit h single material becomes many times costly, since blanket, being selected material, may be available at high cost . Sim ilar t o ot her advanced Railw ay Syst em s, t wo- layer concept of blanket has been recom m ended ( I llust rat ions in Sket ch- 2 & Table- 2) , which will serve all t he funct ional requirem ent s as well as be econom ical due t o saving in cost ly blanket m at erial. Cost saving m ay be of t he order of Rs. 25 lacs t o 50 lacs per km of construction of embankment depending on cost of blanket material.

13.2.1 Geo- synt het ics are already in use widely in leading Railw ay Syst em s world over. Use of Geo- synt het ics in conj unct ion wit h blanket layer has been recom m ended t o reduce blanket layer t hickness alongwit h serving all required funct ions effect ively in case of sub- grade constructed using weak soils. With easy availability of geo- synthetics, its use will be purposeful and economical. 13.3 Thickness of blanket layer, as given in Table 2 and Sket ch C are recom m ended t o be adopt ed for different Axle Loads, Speed, GMT & Soil Cat egory. Specificat ions of blanket , Geo- grid & Geo- synt het ics should be adopt ed as given in Para 9, 10 & 11. Ot her im port ant aspect s of form at ion design, e.g. form at ion widt h, side slope, drainage, sub- soil improvement etc. should also be given due importance. This docum ent supersedes all t he previous inst ruct ions/ guidelines relat ed t o t hickness and specificat ions of blanket m at erial. All ot her provisions in various Guidelines/ Specificat ions/ Technical Report s issued by RDSO on ot her relat ed subj ect s, as already circulated to Zonal Railways are available at RDSO website. These should be followed & adopted in order to construct stable track formation.

13.4

14.0

R E F E R E N CE S
(i) (ii) Guidelines of Earthwork in Railway Projects, no. GE:G- 1, July,2003 State of the art report on sub grade stress and design of track substructure, Civil Engineering Report No. C 271. (iii) State Of The Art Report On Provision Of Railway Formation, Report No. GE 35. (iv) ORE Report D 71, RP 12. (v) UIC Code 719 1994 R (vi) UIC Code 714 1963 R (vii) Procedure for Railway t rack granular layer t hickness det erm inat ion Report no. R- 898, October- 1996 (viii) AREMA Manual, 2002 (ix) Australian Railway (ARTC) Code RTS 3430, March 2006

A CK N O W L E D G E M E N T
The Docum ent has been prepared by t he t eam of Geo- t echnical Engineering Direct orat e of RDSO, wit h special cont ribut ions from Shri M.K. Gupt a, Direct or/ GE, Shri S.K. Awast hi, ARE/ GE and Shri S.K. Oj ha, SSRE/ GE, under t he guidance of Shri Alok Kum ar, Execut ive Direct or/ GE. Drawing work has been done by Shri Sushil Kumar, JE- 1(Design)/GE.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

Sketch - 1

Extrapolation of 'd' value given in UIC Code 719 R, 1994

500 450 400

450

'd' (mm)

350 300 250 200 150 100 50 0 15 17.5 20

320

Extrapolated Values
120 5060 0
22.5 25 27.5 30 32.5 35

Axle Load (Tonne)

Page 19

Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

Re s e a r c h D e s i g n s A n d S t a n d a r d s Or g a n i s a t i o n : Ge o - t e c h n i c a l En g i n e e r i n g D i r e c t o r a t e

SKETCH - 2

Two Layers System Of Formation Top : Thickness Of Blanket Material And Prepared Sub- Grade
Fo r D i f f e r e n t S o i l - Q u a l i t y O f S u b - Gr a d e
75

Blanket Thickness (cm) For Different Axle Loads

60 50 45 40 30 20 15

Top Of Sub- grade


Geo- textile
35

Preferred Sub- grade


50

SQ3 SQ2 SQ1 SQ1 SQ1 SQ3 SQ2 SQ2 SQ3

Sub- grade

Notes : 1. Geo- textile shall mandatorily be provided at bottom of blanket layer, if prepared sub- grade is made of SQ1 or SQ2 soils. 2. If Geo- grid is used below ballast layer, the recommended blanket thickness will be reduced by 30%, subject to minimum thickness of 15cm. 3. Soils having CBR Value less than 4 should not be used in sub- grade unless consulted with RDSO.

Categories Of Soil- Quality :


Soil Quality SQ1 SQ2 SQ3 Description w.r.t. Fine Particles (< 75 micron) Soils containing fines > 50 % Soils containing fines from 12% to 50% Soils containing fines < 12%

Axle Load 20 T 22.9 T (CC+8+2) 25 T 30 T 32.5 T (For DFC)

Colour Code For Blanket Thickness

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

Table 2 - Proposed Two Layers System Of Blanketing On Track Formation For Adoption On Indian Railways
( Reference : Calculations based on UIC practices in terms of UIC Code 719R- 1994)

Categories Of Soil- Quality

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

* ** ***

Theoretical requirement of blanket thickness is less than those recommended. These soils will come in SQ1 category, if hydrological or drainage conditions are not good. Soils having fines in range of 5% 12% will come in SQ2 category, if hydrological or drainage conditions are not good.

2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Recommended thickness of blanket material has been worked out with the provision of 300mm ballast cushion. Recommended blanket thickness is suitable for GMT > 25 & Speed < 160 kmph. Blanket thickness may be reduced by 5 cm for routes with GMT from 10 25 and by 10 cm for GMT < 10. Blanket thickness may be increased by 5cm/10cm, if speed is more than 160 kmph and prepared sub- grade is of SQ2/SQ1 category soil. I n case of new const ruct ion, if SQ1 sub- grade is used for em bankm ent const ruct ion, preferably SQ3/ SQ2 cat egory of soils should be used at top of formation. In case, it is unavoidable to use soil having CBR value less than 4 for construction of formation, RDSO should be consulted. Geo- synthetics (Geo- grid & Geo- textile) : (i) Geo- textile should be provided below blanket layer, if soil of category SQ1/SQ2 is used in prepared sub- grade. (ii) Provision of geo- grid below ballast can reduce t hickness of blanket layer by 30% . However, m inim um 15 cm t hickness of blanket should be ensured. (iii) Specifications of Geo- synt het ics m ay be revised from t im e t o t im e by G. E. Direct orat e of RDSO in t erm s of t echnological advancem ent s/ research on t he subj ect and also based on adopt ion of t he product s by various world railways alongwit h t heir suit abilit y for I ndian conditions.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

SKETCH - 4

Typical Cross- Section of Track Formation For Heavy Axle Load Freight Corridor For Different Soil- Categories In Sub- grade & Prepared Sub- grade
(Reference : Sketch- 2 And Table- 2 At Pages 20 & 21)

Typical Longitudinal- Section of Track Formation For 25T Axle Load

Note : Dept h of blanket layer has been reduced from 250 m m t o 200 mm due to provision of Geo- grid.

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

Where, E = 0.70 m For SQ1 soils used as prepared sub- grade E = 0.55 m For SQ2 soils used as prepared sub- grade E = 0.45 m For SQ3 soils used as prepared sub- grade (Thickness of prepared sub- grade varies from 35 cm to 50 cm) a a a a = = = = 0 - 0.05m - 0.10m - 0.15m For UIC groups 1 & 2# (or lines where speed>160 km for all UIC groups) For UIC group 3 & 4 For UIC groups 5, 6 & 7, 8, 9 with passengers For UIC groups 7, 8, 9 without passengers For wooden sleepers of length 2.60m For concrete sleepers of length L (b in m, L in m) = (2.50- 2.75)/2 = 0.125 m, For PSC Sleeper of 2.75m length on IR For difficult working condition

b=0 b = (2.50- L) / 2 c = - 0.05 m

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

d=0 d = 0.05 m d = 0.12 m f=0 f = 0.05 m f = 0.10 m

For 200 kN axle load For 225 kN axle load For 250 kN axle load For speed < 160 kmph For speed > 160 kmph for sub- grade of SQ2 class For speed > 160 kmph for sub- grade of SQ1 class

g = + Track bed must include a geo- textile for soil of SQ1 & SQ2 class

Based on above values of various fact ors, blanket t hickness calculat ed and recom m ended for different axle loads and com binat ions of soil cat egory used in embankment & prepared Sub- grade has been worked out in following table :

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Guidelines For Blanket Layer Provision On Track Formation With Emphasis On Heavy Axle Load Train Operation

1. 2.

Recommended blanket thickness is suitable for GMT > 25 & Speed < 160 kmph. Blanket thickness may be reduced by 5 cm for routes with GMT from 10 to 25 and by 10 cm for GMT < 10. Blanket thickness may be increased by 5 to 10 cm, if speed is more than 160 kmph and prepared sub- grade of SQ2/SQ1 category soil.

As per UIC 714, UIC Group of lines or sections is depending on theoretical load in daily gross tonnage The details & equivalents on IR are as under : UIC Groups Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5 Group 6 Group 7 Group 8 Group 9 t/day Tf > 102,000 t/day 102,000 > Tf > 70,000 70,000 > Tf > 40,000 40,000 > Tf > 25,000 25,000 > Tf > 12,500 12,500 > Tf > 6,000 6,000 > Tf > 3,000 3,000 > Tf > 1,000 1,000 > Tf Equivalent GMT As Per IR Practices > 37.23 GMT 37.23 > T > 25.55 25.55 > T > 14.60 14.60 > T > 9.13 9.13 > T > 4.56 4.56 > T > 2.19 2.19 > T > 1.1 1.1 > T > 0.36 0.36 > T Page 27

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