Railroad Curve Calculator

The curvature of railroad tracks must be carefully engineered to allow the trains to transit as a safe speed whilst maintaining stability. This simple Railroad Curve Calculator allows you to calculate the degree of curve by entering the radius of the curve.

Railroad Degree of Curve Calculator
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Railroad Curve Calculator Results
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This tutorial provides an introduction to the concept of the Railroad Curve Calculator, a tool used in engineering disciplines to calculate various parameters related to railroad curves. The article covers interesting facts about railroad curves, explains the formula used in the calculator, provides real-life examples of its applications, and includes detailed instructions for its usage.

Interesting Facts about Railroad Curves

Railroad curves play a crucial role in the design and construction of railways. Here are some interesting facts about railroad curves:

  • The curvature of a railroad curve is measured in degrees per unit length, typically expressed as degrees per 100 feet or degrees per 100 meters.
  • The sharper the curve, the higher the degree of curvature. Curvature is denoted by the symbol "C."
  • Curvature affects the speed at which trains can safely travel around a curve. Higher curvature requires reduced speeds to prevent derailments.
  • Railroad curves are often banked or superelevated to counteract the centrifugal force acting on trains as they navigate the curve. This helps to maintain stability and passenger comfort.

Formula for Railroad Curve Calculator

The Railroad Curve Calculator employs a formula based on the degree of curvature (C), the length of curve (L), and the radius of the curve (R). The formula is as follows:

R = 5729.57795 / C

L = R × 2 × π × (C / 360)


  • R is the radius of the curve.
  • C is the degree of curvature.
  • L is the length of the curve.
  • π is a mathematical constant approximately equal to 3.14159.

The first formula calculates the radius of the curve (R) based on the degree of curvature (C), while the second formula calculates the length of the curve (L) using the radius of the curve (R) and the degree of curvature (C).

Real-life Application

The Railroad Curve Calculator is widely used in railway engineering and construction projects. One practical example of its application is in the design of high-speed rail systems. Engineers need to determine the appropriate degree of curvature and length of curves to ensure safe and efficient operation of trains at high speeds.

For instance, consider a high-speed rail project where engineers aim to design curves suitable for trains traveling at 200 km/h. By using the Railroad Curve Calculator, they can determine the required degree of curvature and length of curves to maintain safety and passenger comfort at that speed.


The Railroad Curve Calculator is a valuable tool in railway engineering, providing engineers with the means to calculate the radius and length of railroad curves. By understanding the degree of curvature and length of a curve, engineers can design and construct railway systems that are safe and efficient for trains to navigate.