Prof. David Connolly
Prof. Akm Badrul Alam Prof. Mona Badr El-Din Anwar Dr.-Ing. Ba Trung Cao Prof. Dave Ta Teh Chang Prof. David Connolly Prof. Dr.-Ing. Roberto Cudmani Prof. Sheng Dai Prof. Pierre Delage Prof. Zhen Guo Dr. Tatsuya Ishikawa Prof. Bo-An Jang Prof. Fayun Liang Prof. Jinhui Li Prof. Liping Li Prof. Xiaojun Li Dr. Pengzhi Pan Prof. Keh-Jian (Albert) Shou Prof. Dong Wang Prof. Rui Wang Prof. Fawu Wang Dr. Mark H. Wayne Prof. Liam Wotherspoon Prof. Zhongxuan Yang Prof. Zhiguo Yan Prof. Xiong Yu Prof. Zhen-Yu YIN Prof. Fengshou Zhang Prof. Annan Zhou
Prof. David Connolly
University of Leeds, UK
Invited lecture title:Recent advances in railway geotechnics considering the impacts of climate change

Bio: David Connolly is Professor of Railway Engineering at the University of Leeds, UK.  He holds a MEng degree in civil engineering from the University of Edinburgh (UK), and a PhD in railways also from the same institution.  He previously worked at Heriot Watt University before joining the University of Leeds in 2017 as an Associate Professor.  He became Full Professor in 2022.  His work is focused on railway geotechnics, climate and machine learning.  He has published over 100 papers and has won 8 awards for his research. He works closely with the railway industry and is a Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers and a Fellow of the Permanent Way Institution.

Abstract: The railway industry continues to aspire towards higher passenger train speeds and higher freight axle loads.  This includes operational high-speed train speeds now reaching 350km/h and freight axle loads in the region of 40 tonnes.  These characteristics result in track and subgrade challenges such as differential settlement, bearing capacity issues, soil non-linearity and dynamic amplification.  However, at the same time, changes in climate are also causing a variety of interrelated challenges.  For example, changes in rainfall and potential evapotranspiration are causing more frequent track-earthwork flooding, while sea-level rise is also impacting coastal railway earthworks.  From the perspective of railway geotechnics, climate projections show that the railway will likely become a wetter environment.  Therefore this presentation will discuss recent advances in railway geotechnics and geodynamics, with a focus on differential track settlement.  Then the effects of ballast fouling and trackbed moisture on track degradation will be presented along with implications for future climate scenarios.