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

Feasibility of Special Trackwork Inspection Using Ultrasonics

Document Series
Research Results
Federal Railroad Administration
Report Number
RR 22-25
Subject Track
Special trackwork, frogs, crossing diamond, nondestructive evaluation, NDE, ultrasonic testing, UT, microstructure, microhardness, coarse grain, track, test sample

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) co-sponsored Transportation Technology Center, Inc. (TTCI) on a trackwork inspection effort scheduled for completion in September 2022. This research demonstrated the potential for the low-frequency ultrasonic testing (UT) nondestructive evaluation (NDE) method to characterize internal flaws in crossing. First, TTCI fabricated a test sample from the crossing diamond that contained drilled holes (reflectors) at different depths. Second, microstructural analysis and microhardness measurements characterized its microstructural and material properties. And third, researchers applied a low-frequency UT method to detect the reflectors in the test sample. 

Last updated: Friday, September 30, 2022