• Ashiru Mohammed Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
  • Ibrahim Aliyu Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
  • Hussaini Abdullahi Umar Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
  • Aliyu Umar Mani Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.



Ballast, Los Angeles Abrasion (LAA), image, fouling,gradation, degradation


Ballast degradation through attrition and breakage during operations affects the structural performance of the railway track system. In an attempt to study railway ballast degradation changes due to train cyclic loading at micro-scale. This study quantified and compared the changes that occur on ballast particles due to ballast degradation using LAA test and image analysis techniques. TB/T 2328.14-2008 gradation use by china railways was adopted. Series of LAA tests were conducted to accelerate the ballast particle breakage and abrasion, in a sequence of 250 turns of the LAA test drum, after which the changes in gradation and morphological properties were quantified. The morphological properties were quantified using imaging techniques (Aggregate Image measurement system (AIMS)). At the end of the study, the overall results showed that ballast degradation has a strong correlation with the ballast particle's morphological properties. The relationships and the indices of morphological changes can be used for numerical modeling and simulations using discrete element method (DEM) to study the performance of ballast at different degradation levels.


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