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Rail Deflection Tests Using Photogrammetric Methods

November 2021

Longstanding clients Coleman Rail and parent company, Acciona, approached our team with a track deflection challenge that required very accurate measurement of the rail displacement as a locomotive was driven through a project site.

The project site encompassed more than 100km of regional track and more than 200 deflection sites were nominated by the client in concert with a parallel geotechnical investigation. Agonics worked closely with partner, Gancel, and the Geodetic Systems International (GSI) industrial photogrammetric technology to design a rail deflection process that would capture deflections at both sleeper and mid-crib locations.

Data processing by Agonics has allowed Coleman Rail and its track consultants to calculate the track modulus at each site; this information will be used to assess the extent of work required and associated costs to lift sections of the Victorian rural rail network to a higher track class.

Two pilots studies of the Agonics deflection solution were completed at Williamstown and Wyndham Vale stabling yard utilising a range of track vehicles and under day/night conditions before embarking on the mainline scope. Once mobilised, the team negotiated a wide range of site conditions while navigating the frequent changes to COVID19 working restrictions during Victoria’s current outbreak.