Sunday, May 2, 2010

High-speed train innovation - making stops without stopping!

A recent Google Buzz by a friend of mine has alerted me to an amazing new Chinese high-speed train innovation - get on and off a bullet train without stopping!

Consider the amount of time that is wasted by a station stops. If there are 30 stations between Beijing and  Guangzhou , just stopping and accelerating again at each station will waste both energy and time.  A mere 5 min stop per station will result in a total loss of 5 min x 30 stations or 2.5 hours of train journey time.

The Chinese have come up with this brilliant innovation:


1. For those who are boarding the train : The passengers at a station embark onto to a connector cabin way before the train even arrives at the station. When the train arrives, it will not stop at all. It just slows down to pick up the connector cabin which will move with the train on the roof.

While the train is still moving away from the station, those passengers will board the train from the connector cabin mounted on the train's roof. After fully unloading all its passengers, the cabin connector cabin will be moved to the back of the train so that the next batch of outgoing passengers who want to alight at the next station will board the connector cabin at the rear of the train roof.

2. For those who are getting off: As stated after fully unloading all its passengers, the cabin connector cabin will be moved to the back of the train so that the next batch of outgoing passengers who want to alight at the next station will board the connector cabin at the rear of the train roof. When the train arrives at the next station, it will simply drop the whole connector cabin at the station itself and leave it behind at the station. The outgoing passengers can take their own time to disembark at the station. At the same time, the train will pick up the incoming embarking passengers on another connector cabin in the front part of the train's roof. So the train will always drop one connector cabin at the rear of its roof and pick up a new connector cabin in the front part of the train's roof at each station.

A brilliant innovation. Bring on the high-speed trains!

1 comment:

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