Weichen Xu, Binbin Zhang, Yu Deng, Zhengquan Wang, Quantong Jiang, Lihui Yang, Jie Zhang
December 24, 2020
Rapid development of railway industry makes safety increasingly important. Wear, contact-impact, fatigue and corrosion are important factors initiating rail track degradation from the beginning, while corrosion attracts far less attention than other issues. Direct corrosion cost due to railway corrosion in China was 18.88 billion RMB, so corrosion definitely deserves more attention. This work has reviewed studies focussing exclusively on rail corrosion, including corrosion forms, protection and detection technologies. General corrosion on large rail surface is not limiting, while crevice corrosion between rail and liner, resulting in thinning of rail foot, is regarded significant but overlooked. Moreover, reciprocating micro-motion between rail foot and liner mechanically assists the ongoing of crevice corrosion. However, it was mentioned in very few reports and not investigated extensively. Coating and surface modification may be applied for mitigation of rail track corrosion. The weakness of coating is poor mechanical properties, while surface modification, including thermal spraying and laser cladding, may be a better way. Development of novel steel is another effective method, but loss of mechanical properties becomes obstacles for practical applications. Ultrasonic and infrared have been applied for detection, while more advanced technologies are promising. Suggestions are made on specific research topics in this field.