72859 - Railway and Airport Construction M

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Industry, innovation and infrastructure Sustainable cities

Academic Year 2018/2019

Learning outcomes

Acquire good knowledge about the design criteria of railways and airports.

Course contents

Requirements/Prior knowledge

A prior knowledge and understanding of road pavements, in terms of materials and laying procedures, is required to attend with profit this course.


Course contents

Planning and design of railways and airports: geometric design consistency, traffic analysis, materials and construction techniques for pavements.


1. design of the railway track structure: rails, sleepers, fastening system, ballast, sub-ballast, subgrade;

2. switches and crossings;

3. railway stations;

4. railway maintenance and monitoring processes;

5. railway high-speed tracks and trains.


1. air side geometric design;

2. declared distances of a runway and request distances of an aircraft;

3. obstacle limitation surfaces;

4. length and orientation of runways;

5. design methods for flexible and rigid pavements;

6. visual aids for navigation: airport lighting, marking and signage.


-     Bonnett C. (2005). Pratical railway engineering, Ed. Imperial College Press;

-     Ashford N. & Wright P. (1992). Airport Engineering. John Wiley & Sons;

-     Horonjeff R., McKelvey F., Sproule W. & Young S. (2010). Planning & design of airports. Mc Graw Hill.

Teaching methods

Oral lessons.

Assessment methods

During the course two partial written exams (one about railway constructions and one about airport constructions). Passing both partial exams means to pass the complete exam.

Passing only one partial exam, the student gets the right to a reduced oral exam.

For those who do not pass the partial exams, single oral exam (one question on railway constructions and one question on airport constructions).

Teaching tools

Lectures will be given with ppt slides.

Office hours

See the website of Valeria Vignali