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P17GT12 Rail Track Design Workshop
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Rail Track Design Workshop

2-Day Workshop: A Detailed Guide to Engineering & Designing Quality Rail Track Systems. Grow your knowledge & appreciation of the performance of rail track systems, how they are engineered for functionality, capacity, safety & reliability by examining rail engineering principles, data, techniques & best practices.

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Key Learning Objectives

  • Analyse the principles, data and techniques applied to rail track design
  • Discover how today’s track systems are engineered and designed for functionality, capacity, safety, reliability, and competitiveness
  • Gain a working knowledge of the performance of railway track systems in response to loadings
  • Understand the critical relationships between track and rolling stock
  • Gain insight into the implications of terminal design on efficient railway operations
  • Learn to optimise the long-term benefit and economy from resources expended
  • Gain insight into best practices through an examination of various track designs

About the Course

This course will examine the design and layout of rail track, including horizontal and vertical alignment, cross section, turnouts and crossings, component selection, earthwork, drainage, and clearances.

The design approaches highlight applicable Australian standards and general industry practices.

The participant will learn how traffic characteristics and operational requirements affect design. The coverage distinguishes between high-speed, conventional, rapid transit, and light-rail systems.

The course includes exercises to provide experience with typical design procedures. On completion, the participant may take credit for 16 Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hours with their industry association (for example the Institute of Engineers Australia)

An engineering or engineering technology background is preferred.

Who Will Benefit

  • Rail track engineers, designers and consultants
  • Railway engineers, track supervisors
  • Engineers, safety and maintenance managers working in rail
  • Government policy makers, transportation and planning agencies
  • Industry sectors who own/operate/use track on-site
  • Rail industry contractors and project managers


The course provided the history and development of the fundamentals that also gave reasons behind the rules in place. Leon kept a steady pace and endeavoured to cover information from a variety of needs.”
Human Factors & Safety Information Manager, Office of Rail Safety

I enjoyed learning about the control system elements and about control tables. It has given me a good base understanding of rail signalling and control fundamentals. The course was informative with good pace of lectures and a mix of exercises with the presentation.”
Senior Systems Engineer, Nova Systems

Terms & Conditions

To read the training course terms and conditions read more here

Course Outline

Design influences

  • Traffic demands
  • Vehicle properties
  • Train resistance
  • Grade and curve resistances
  • Locomotive tractive effort
  • Coupler force limitations
  • Stopping distance

Track location

  • Desired features
  • Controls
  • Studies and surveys
  • Data collection and management
  • Economic analysis of alternatives
  • Design documents

Track engineering

    • Track cross-section and components
      > Rail and rail joints
      > Restraining guard rails and flangeways
      > Rail fasteners and anchors
      > Sleepers
      > Ballast and subballast
      > Ballastless track systems
      > Subgrade
    • Track geometry

> Wheel-rail interface
> Gage
> Surface parameters
> Alignment

Loads and allowable stresses

  • General load characteristics
  • Freight railways
  • Passenger and transit railways

Behaviour of conventional ballasted track

  • Analytical framework
  • Track stiffness
  • Rail mechanics
  • Effect of rail joints
  • Stress dispersion with depth
  • Contribution of track substructure
  • Dynamic effects
  • Thermal loads in welded rail track

Overview of ballastless track systems

Component selection and analysis

  • Rail
  • Sleepers/fasteners
  • Ballast/subballast
  • Subgrade

Basic geometric design

  • Horizontal alignment
    > Circular curves
    > The spiral curve
    > Superelevation
  • Vertical alignment
  • Grades
  • Vertical (profile) curves
  • Limits on curves and grades
  • Alignment coordination (blending)

Advanced geometric design

  • Turnouts and track crossings
    > Components, various options
    > Critical dimensions
    > Classification standards
    > Applicability of different designs
  • Clearances and track spacing
  • Providing track capacity
  • Track junctions
  • Yard and terminal layout
    > Types of facilities
    > General configuration and layout
    > Capacity and operational considerations

Rail-highway grade (level) crossings


  • Surface water runoff
    > Culverts
    > Ditches
    > Storm sewers
    > Detention/retention facilities
    > Bridges
  • Groundwater control

Track carrying structures-overview

Review and wrap up

On-site & in-house training

Deliver this course how you want, where you want, when you want – and save up to 40%! 8+ employees seeking training on the same topic?

Talk to us about an on-site/in-house & customised solution.


Still have a question?

Sushil Kunwar
Training Consultant
+61 (0)2 9080 4395

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