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Thread: Maglev Trains: the Future?

  1. #1

    Default Maglev Trains: the Future?


    The superspeed maglev system has neither wheels nor axles nor gearing. It does not drive-it hovers without touching the guideway, with no friction nor wear. Electronics replace mechanical parts. The functions of wheel-on- rail, i.e. support and guidance, propulsion and braking, are taken over by an electromagnetic levitation and propulsion system. The Transrapid system works completely contact free.



    The technology explained:

    http://www.o-keating.com/hsr/maglev.htm

    http://www.calpoly.edu/~cm/studpage/clottich/fund.html

    Potential US routes:


    http://www.transrapid-usa.com/main.asp

    The Baltimore-Washington Maglev project:

    http://www.bwmaglev.com/default.htm

    Site of the German maker:

    http://www.transrapid.de/en/index.html

  2. #2

    Default Maglev Trains

    So far China has been the only country to build a a maglev in use right? I heard that the US and Japan is experimenting with maglevs. But isn't the only in-use system in China?

  3. #3

    Default Maglev Trains

    I'm not even sure it's in use in Shanghai. Even though it's already been inaugurated by Chinese and German officials, I think the public will start using it only next September.

    I've read in some newspaper this morning that a big German project was just abandonned and the only remaining possibility was a short line linking Munich to its airport.

  4. #4
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    Default Maglev Trains

    There have been many difficulties keeping these things running.

  5. #5

    Default Maglev Trains

    That's right.
    In Shanghai, some parts of the train nearly caught fire several times.

  6. #6

    Default Maglev Trains

    "There have been many difficulties keeping these things running."

    "...some parts...nearly caught fire several times."

    Sounds like the early days of the automobile.

  7. #7

    Default Maglev Trains

    Yeah, I guess the technology isn't perfect yet. However, I've heard great things about the maglev. Not only does it go fast, but there is no friction, besides from the air, because it is suspended above the rail. In addition to that, it doesn't use any fuel so its clean. Hopefully the technology improves so we can ride em some time soon here in the US.

    (Edited by Freedom Tower at 9:01 pm on July 18, 2003)

  8. #8
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    Default Maglev Trains

    The most tangible maglev project in the U.S. so far is a 60-odd-mile commuter line between Baltimore and Washington, D.C..

  9. #9

    Default Maglev Trains

    Is that actually U/C or just proposed?

  10. #10
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    Default Maglev Trains

    Proposed, for now. *It's under serious consideration by local authorities, from what I understand. *It would definitely be a major boost to the regional economy; both cities have been in a state of decline for decades. *Baltimore and DC, along with Philadelphia and Newark, are the major East Coast cities that I would really like to see "bounce back," so to speak.

  11. #11

    Default Maglev Trains

    There are many possible definitions of "bounce back", but if you haven't visited Washington in the last two years or so, you are in for a surprise. Downtown has come back with a vengeance: handsome new buildings replace the old clutter of parking lots, the sidewalks are rebuilt, the subway is packed, there are new restaurants and nightspots everywhere, crowds of people on the street, and the place is obviously safe, even late at night.

    I can't name an urban transformation as swift and thorough. Maybe Providence?

    (Edited by ablarc at 2:12 pm on July 20, 2003)

  12. #12
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    Default Maglev Trains

    That's good to hear, ablarc. *I hope, however, that sooner or later the cities I named experience an increase in population rather than a decline, which is what all of them have suffered from since the end of WW2.

  13. #13

    Default Maglev Trains

    Philadelphia is currently the leading basket case: this city is actually filling up with parking lots, dissolving faster than alka-seltzer; at least half of it now looks like the Bronx, and its city limits population is down by more than half a million from its peak.

    Grossly mismanaged, this is The City that Can't.

    Too bad, because it sure has a distinguished past, and a lot of great but fast-deteriorating housing stock, currently in the process of being dismantled rather than gentrified.

    Would a maglev turn it into a desirable bedroom suburb of New York?

  14. #14
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    Default Maglev Trains

    From the statistics I've seen, the population decline has been levelling off in Philly. *According to the 2000 Census, its population only declined by about 5%, which is quite an improvement compared to back in the '70s and '80s. *Baltimore, I believe, lost about a third of its population in the past fifty years—950,000 in 1950 to 630,000 in 2003. *Washington has had the same problem as Baltimore for the past few decades.

  15. #15

    Default Maglev Trains

    Philadelphia's population decline has levelled off for the same reason that the Bronx's has: everybody with a reason to get out has gotten out. Remaining are the hard core low lifes and otherwise desperately poor and the yuppies in their townhouses and luxury condos.

    When you hit bottom, you can't go down further. But you can keep on tearing down unprofitable buildings, particularly if the tax structure gives you relief for such vandalism.

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