|5. Ballasted Track with Direct-connect Sleepers|
For reasons of energy conservation and environmental policy, ballastless track with elastic sleepers has been adopted as the track structure in areas such as grade separations. However, this type of track has disadvantages over vibration-reducing slab track, such as higher construction costs and inferior track bed workability. A new ballasted track with direct-connect sleepers was therefore developed (Fig. 1). This type of track combines the advantages of elastic sleeper ballastless track with those of ballasted track. The whole track structure is supported elastically by fixing the track to the track bed using sleeper bottom pads and variable percolation pads, and the horizontal load is supported by ballast spread around. This leads to a reduction in vibration and noise, and simplifies the track bed bar arrangement work resulting in an expected cost reduction of about 10 %. The conventional work of track re-alignment is no longer required.