Modelling ground vibration from railways using wavenumber finite- and boundary-element methods
A mathematical model is presented for ground vibration induced by trains, which uses wavenumber finite- and boundary-element methods. The track, tunnel and ground are assumed homogeneous and infinitely long in the track direction (x-direction). The models are formulated in terms of the wavenumber in the x-direction and discretization in the yz-plane. The effect of load motion in the x-direction is included. Compared with a conventional, three-dimensional finite- or boundary-element model, this is computationally faster and requires far less memory, even though calculations must be performed for a series of discrete wavenumbers. Thus it becomes practicable to carry out investigative study of train-induced ground vibration. The boundary-element implementation uses a variable transformation to solve the well-known problem of strongly singular integrals in the formulation. A ‘boundary truncation element’ greatly improves accuracy where the infinite surface of the ground is truncated in the boundary-element discretization. Predictions of vibration response on the ground surface due to a unit force applied at the track are performed for two railway tunnels. The results show a substantial difference in the environmental vibration that could be expected from the alternative designs. The effect of a moving load is demonstrated in a surface vibration example in which vibration propagates from an embankment into layered ground.