Rail Turnouts and Crossover Updates with Diverted Profiles

August 23, 2022 Bryant Quinney

To alleviate connection and elevation inconsistencies between profiles of the turnout or crossover alignment and the main alignment, the command Diverted Profiles is available within Rail. This capability gives users a more consistent and familiar method of developing the profile geometry.


To illustrate this, I will create a crossover between my two main rail alignments, a process which, as an aside, now gives us a better idea where the geometry will be placed by showing it in the background while you toggle between the various settings. Red curves are the turnouts, and the yellow object is the crossover alignment. This is helpful by showing why certain settings or choices my not be feasible when you cycle through your choices.


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Description automatically generated On the Profile tab of the dialog box for creating the crossover, I have ‘EG’ profiles assigned for both the north and south main alignments. Also, the name format is in place for the south-to-north connection and the style is set.

Once you click OK, the crossover is created, but like the profiles command, if you do not create a view, then there is no graphical validation of the profile having been created. However, like any alignment-profile association, where you see the profile listed as a parent-child relationship, the same goes for the crossover.


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Description automatically generated with medium confidence Under the alignments collection, you will find both the Rail Alignments and Rail Diverted Alignments listed. Expand the latter and you will see the name of the Diverted alignment and the EG profile nested further in.


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Description automatically generated Before we see the new profile that was generated, let’s clarify something. The command Create Diverted Profile is a separate command that was actually covered when we went to the Profile tab in the Crossover creation dialog box. If we did not opt to create a profile, then we would have had need to use this command. That is to say, if we had the box unchecked in the image, then it would be necessary to execute this command afterwards.


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Description automatically generated However, to show that process and command , I created another crossover oriented north-to-south and named ‘Diverted Alignment - (N to S)’ accordingly. This time, I left the checkbox for creating the profile to ‘unchecked’. That leaves us with just the alignment. Now, executing Create Diverted Profile tasks the user with selecting the turnout (the hatched pie-shaped wedge), not the crossover alignment that was created. Identifying the crossover alignment and the related alignments (e.g. Main 2N and Main 1S) is done for us and is shown in the dialog box.

All that is left for the user to do is set a name for the new profile, style, and labels (if needed) and click OK.


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Description automatically generated Now, to show the geometry in a profile view, there are a couple of choices available. As the name implies, Draw Turnouts in Profile View only draws the turnout portion. Not the entire crossover.

It also results in geometry that is not listed anywhere from a hierarchy standpoint. That is to say, the turnout profile does not appear in the Prospector or the Profile View properties. To remove it from the profile view, you would have to select the object and simply delete.


Otherwise, the profile functions as a normal one would. You can create a profile view of it and superimpose the profile to another profile view when needing to see the relation.

About the Author

Bryant Quinney

Civil Solutions Applications Expert<br><br>Working with clients to implement various technologies and techniques within civil engineering disciplines. With my travels, I teach/train, troubleshoot, solve, configure, and implement solutions based on client needs. Drawing on many years of experience across various types of projects, I continue to enjoy doing this type of work.

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