Engineers of Unitsky String Technologies Inc. took measurements of the track structures temperatures at the Belarusian String Technology Testing Centre EcoTechnoPark. Vyacheslav Babushkin, Head of the design bureau «Transport Overpass» told about the aims and results of the work.
According to the specialist, the task of the tests was to determine how the ambient temperature affects the temperature of the rail. In the long term, this will help increase the service life of the string tracks and protect them from extreme weather conditions.
Measurements were made at sections of the track structure that are in sun and shade. In turn, the environmental parameters were recorded with the help of a weather station on the territory of the EcoTechnoPark. In particular, the company specialists took into account air temperature and humidity, pressure, wind speed and direction, precipitation, solar radiation, and energy.
The test results were commented on by Vyacheslav Babushkin:
«As a result, we found that the maximum temperature of the structure is reached when the sun is at its zenith, and the solar energy is at its maximum in the selected region. The largest temperature differences between the metal and the air occur at sunset, when the air temperature drops drastically, and the string-rail cools down much more slowly. Moreover, the larger the structure, the slower the temperature will drop. At the same time, the heating itself takes longer in comparison to small-scale transport overpasses. Incidentally, the largest metal temperature differences were obtained on a flexible track structure. With its small footprint, it heated up faster than the others.».
Vyacheslav highlighted that similar tests had also been carried out at other times of the year. With temperatures varying from +35 ℃ to -27 ℃, the employees of Unitsky String Technologies Inc. were able to collect enough data which will help to build string tracks in different latitudes, from the Arctic to the tropics.
In addition, the specialist pointed out that the string tracks are generally designed to withstand extreme weather conditions. This is achieved by means of a prestressed rail, which has an uncut structure. When the temperature drops, such a rail will stretch and when the temperature rises, the rail will sag within the permissible limits and without detriment to the transport. The tests carried out have made this technology even more advanced.