MODURAIL - Modelling Dynamic Uncertainty in
Railway Track Life Cycle Costs

A significant reduction of overall track Maintenance and Renewal (M&R) costs is expected as a result of improved maintenance policies based on optimised Life Cycle Cost (LCC) predictions. However, current track LCC predictions are still based on deterministic models giving rise to important disparities on the results and making it difficult to assess the long term consequences of a given investment, maintenance or renewal strategy, as proven in a EU project where the research team participated (INNOTRACK). Therefore, stress is being put towards the development of robust probabilistic models that consider and assess the life cycle uncertainties within Reliability, Availability and Maintainability (RAM) parameters and cost figures.

The main objective of the MODURAIL research project is to improve current methodologies to assess the track deterioration, maintenance and cost prediction, both for existing conventional lines and for future high-speed lines to be built.

The proposed methodological approach will focus on the modelling of uncertainty in RAM parameters grounded in the in-depth analysis of extensive datasets from Portuguese and Spanish lines (approach traditionally unusual due to Infrastructure Manager confidentiality policies). Innovative stochastic modelling to account for life cycle uncertainties in degradation, availability and maintainability will be developed using previous cluster analysis, Bayesian statistics and simulation tools.

The potentiality of the LCC methodology developed and its portability towards infrastructure pricing schemes and innovative condition-based contract will also be assessed, following a research stream developed in a previous European project led by the research PI (RAILCALC).
Project Funding: Institutions: Project Leader: Paulo F. Teixeira
FCT logo IST logo Professor and Researcher in Railways
Instituto Superior T├ęcnico (IST), Universidade de Lisboa
Av. Rovisco Pais s/n, DECIVIL, SUTVS, Gab.3.02
1049-001 Lisboa, Portugal
Tel: (+351) 21.841.83.02