Dynamic analysis and performance of a repoint track switch

Repoint is an alternative concept for the design of track switches developed at Loughborough University. The concept, based around a stub switch, offers several improvements over current designs. Through a novel locking arrangement, it allows parallel, multi-channel actuation and passive locking functions, providing a high degree of fault tolerance. The aim of the work presented in this paper is to evaluate the dynamic interaction forces due to the passage of rolling stock over the switch and, particularly, the area of the stub rail ends, in comparison to a conventional switch. Specific behaviour and load transfer conditions from one rail to the other at the joint are analysed, as well as long term wear conditions of the rails. These evaluations are undertaken by means of multi-body dynamic simulations, leading to design refinement of the stub rail ends and the identification of further research and development requirements in their design.