Category: Railroad

27Jul 2015

Rehabilitating Soils to Increase the Bearing Capacity Under Milk Storage and Grain Handling Facilities

By Robert Armstead

Silos are storage systems designed to contain massive amounts of weight within a concentrated area and vary in size, ranging from 20-80 feet tall with diameters of 12-30 feet. Some storage facilities have more than one or two silos sitting in a small area.  When the silos are full, the significant weight can impact settlement of the foundation and/or the foundations of nearby structures.

In addition to the consolidated weight of tanks that hold liquid and grain storage bins, the surrounding processing facilities get a lot of traffic as well. There is a constant stream of trucks, mostly loaded with heavy cargo, coming and going from the facility. When there is a rail spur next to the facility, the soils underneath and around the grain bins, silos, and mission critical buildings are taxed with even more weight.  Consequently, there is a lot of weight consolidated into a relatively small area around these crucial, very busy facilities.

After heavy rainfall like…

20Mar 2015

Repairing America’s Infrastructure

By Robert Armstead

It doesn’t take an engineer or politician to know how bad America’s infrastructure has become. In fact, anyone who regularly sits in traffic or rides a transit system on their daily commute can testify to how critical our aging transportation systems are. URETEK Holdings is one company that helps repair America’s roadways, bridges, runways, storm drains, railways, and ports to keep America running.

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) says that America must invest $3.6 trillion in our infrastructure by 2020.  Yet, between the Obama administration’s 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the 2013 Fix-It-First program, in the last four years only $71 billion has been allocated for repairs and upgrades to the nation’s highways, bridges, tunnels, overpasses and ports.

Every four years the ASCE analyzes America’s infrastructure and puts…

13Feb 2015

URETEK’s Safety Culture

By Robert Armstead

Workplace safety is paramount at URETEK Holdings because of the many hazardous environments and conditions the work crews navigate on a daily basis.  Everyone, including all of our clients and customers, wants our crews to be safe on the job.  At one job site the crew may be dealing with power lines over their work space, at another job it could be working in the confined space of a storm drain, or along a busy highway, or rail road, or even working on a barge in the Everglades.  Regardless of what the safety challenges are on each individual project, the URETEK crew is well prepared and trained to keep themselves and others safe on the job site. It all starts by creating a culture built on safety.

Recently, URETEK was given a 0.75 safety rating.  This Experience Modification Rate (EMR) is given by the National Council on Compensation…

10Jun 2014

High-Density Polymer Railroad Application Demonstration

By Robert Armstead

URETEK Holdings is always ready to test their products and expertise using high-density polymers (HDP) on new and innovative applications.  When Ryan Rolfe of KSA, a supplier of pre-stressed concrete crossties and switch ties along with reinforced concrete products, contacted URETEK’s Joe Kindler to find out if URETEK’s injection method would work in stabilizing concrete panels used on commuter, transit and high speed rail systems, URETEK was up for the challenge.

KSA wanted to know what would happen after using the URETEK method to stabilize concrete rail panels.  Specifically, KSA wanted to test the strength of the bond between the panel and the URETEK product to find out if the concrete panels could be easily removed and replaced without disturbing the remaining ballast.

Two different tests were conducted. Panel A is…

29Oct 2013

Demonstration of in-situ stabilization of soils for Pennsylvania Department of Transportation

By uretekhr

URETEK recently had the opportunity to illustrate the  in-situ stabilization of soils through injection using the URETEK 486Star structural polymer.  The demonstration was conducted for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation at Pennsylvania State University.

First step, build the boxes.

Each box was constructed of .75″ plywood restrained by 2″ x 2″ x .125″ angle iron and .375″ and Plexiglas inserts restrained by 2″ x 2″ x .25″ angle iron.

Next, each box was filled with various untreated soils.  The first level was 9″ of silty sub-grade mixed with RAP.  The second level was 6″ of medium sand, the third level was river run aggregate (.375″ to .75″ diameter) and the top level was 2″ of limestone aggregate.  Each soil layer was rained in from approximately 3 feet height and there was no additional compaction.