Regular preventive rail grinding has become the industry best practice to extend rail life.
Preventive grinding is accomplished by matching the capabilities of the rail grinder performing the work to the growth rate of rolling contact fatigue (RCF) on a railroad asset.
This approach has many benefits notably extending the life of the rail by removing less material, the fatigued steel, each grind cycle and avoiding corrective grinding with multiple passes and high metal removal amounts.
The preventive grinding strategy also reduces the development and occurrence of shelling, spalling, corrugations (SSC) and other surface defects which inhibit ultrasonic testing of the rail.
By grinding areas before RCF reaches the point of requiring multiple passes this also means the rail surface condition is relatively clean and ultrasonically testable.
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