Dynamic and Long-Term Behavior of the Railway (CVF)

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José Nuno Varandas

Invited Lecturer

André Luis Marques Paixão


• It is intended that the trainees review and acquire knowledge about the mechanical behavior of railways, both the short-term dynamic behavior and the long-term behavior. A description of the main aspects and intervening factors is made, and the most common representation models present in the bibliography are presented. Situations in which the dynamics of the vehicle-road interaction can decisively influence both the instantaneous behavior (short-term) and the evolution of the longitudinal leveling of the road (long-term) are also identified and described.

Requirements on previous knowledge

• Knowledge of classical mechanics, from the point of view of the concept of forces, tensions and deformations, and the definition of constitutive models.


• Resilient instantaneous behavior of railways;
• Long-term behavior (in terms of permanent deformation) of railways;
• Models of railway vehicles and actions imposed on the railway;
• Numerical modeling of vehicle-road interaction;
• Case studies: rail irregularities, undulating wear, track defects, sleeper insoles;
• Aspects of dimensioning of railways;
• Railway transition zones;
• Specific effects associated with high speed.

Recommended literature

• Slides from CVF (Varandas, 2020)
• Esveld, C. (2001) Modern Railway Tracks, 2nd Edition, MRT-Productions;
• Popp, K., Schiehlen, W., (2003) System dynamics and long-term behaviour of railway vehicles, track and subgrade, Springer;
• Varandas, J.N., (2013) Long-term behaviour of railway transitions under dynamic loading, Tese de doutoramento, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade Nova de Lisboa


One report elaborating about one of the topics described in this discipline, and one final test.

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