Audience and Scope
The purpose of this article is to inform college engineering students about the process of replacing railroad track ties. The college students will be interested in an internship or a full timeposition within a railroad agency. Therefore, these students are likely to know how trains operateand some basic railroad terminology. However, they probably do not know about the differentrailroad maintenance processes. This information will help the reader become moreknowledgeable about a subject that is related to their career. Thus, the students will be able tobetter transition and succeed at work.
Gravel and rocks that make up the railroad bed
Ballast Distribution System
Track vehicle that distributes ballast along the track to create aneven and level track bed
Track vehicle that is used to vacuum ballast from the track
Track segments that are not fully secured
Metal nails that are used to secure the rails to the ties
Tool that is used to remove spikes
Wooden beams that sit underneath the railroad rails
Track vehicle that is used to lift, remove, and insert ties
Many companies provide commuters with trainservice from one location to another. For example,Amtrak (Figure 1) offers people train service allaround the country. To ensure safe and reliable travel,these companies need to maintain the railroad tracks.A key task in maintaining the tracks is ensuring thattrack
are secure and in good condition. If thetrack ties are not secure or are in poor condition,
develops and causes the train to move violentlyand potentially derail. Hence, it is critical thatcompanies replace track ties when needed. Replacingtrack ties is a three phase process that uses both track equipment and manual labor to replace ties.
Figure 1. Amtrak train