Railway Inspection (IVF)

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Simona Fontul

Invited Lecturers

Ana Maria de Barros Duarte Fonseca

Elsa Cristina Tavares Lourenço Alves

José João Roseira Delgado Muralha

Luís Miguel Pina de Oliveira Santos


• Familiarize trainees with the functioning of the track in service and with the track parameters that allow for diagnosing its condition. The main inspection methods of the railway infrastructure will be described, from track, bridges, tunnels and drainage, its operation and processing of measurement results. Traditional monitoring methods and future trends will be presented. At the end of this module, trainees will have notions of the efficient inspection of various elements of the railway infrastructure, the causes of degradation and adequate maintenance measures.

Requirements on previous knowledge

• Basic knowledge of civil engineering


• Railway circulation principles. Constitution of the infrastructure and superstructure
• Inspection, testing and monitoring of railway bridges
• Inspection of railway drainage systems
• Inspection of tunnels and slopes
• Track parameters, geometric characteristics, ballast thickness
• Track inspection, inspection types and equipment
• Track quality classification and track maintenance
• Basic notions of track maintenance
• Multi-resolution monitoring

Recommended literature

• Syllabus Infraestruturas Ferroviárias e Portuárias (Fontul, S. Neves, M.G. - 2018)
• “Modern Railway Track” MRT-Productions, Netherlands. (Esvelt, C. (2001)
• Inspeção à infraestrutura ferroviária Palestra proferida no FCT UNL (Baldeiras, M. – 2013)
• Syllabus Inspeção da Via Férrea 2019/2020.


Two written mini tests (2x30%) and a research report delivered and defended orally (40%)

Study language