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Old 04-28-2009, 08:28 AM   #41
Darth_Yuthura
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I have a feeling that quite a bit will depend on steam power again. Like steam-driven turbines in nuclear power plants to produce the electricity that, in one form or another, will be used to power the vehicles of tomorrow.

You know, I was actually in favor of D_Y's argument for improved mass transit (it is certainly advantageous in in urban areas) until it degenerated into a socialist rant about forcing people to live like ants and how anyone who isn't in favor of that level of tyranny is just a selfish pig.
Actually, the issue of mass transit shifted into commuter rail systems.

I had defined that maglev would be unrealistic for that purpose, but it would serve well as a freight and passenger line between the major cities. If people don't intend to live in these 'steel caves,' then most goods would still have to go through Chicago, New York, LA, and other transportation hubs. Maglev lines would simply make it cheaper and more favorable than current diesel train lines.

If you attempted to use Maglev for short trips, then it would not function well in the US. For long trips, then it would come out on top.

@Qliveur:

Before anyone goes pointing the finger at maglev for being 'every bit as dirty as hydrogen,' then I'd like to see a hydrogen-powered vehicle that achieves a nearly 80% energy efficiency rating. I'd also love to see another solution that doesn't involve generating more energy when the issue is coping with fewer sources.

Oh, and your nuclear suggestion is not so clean either. Mining, milling, and fuel rod fabrication are actually very bad for the environment.

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Old 04-28-2009, 11:26 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by Darth_Yuthura View Post
Actually, the issue of mass transit shifted into commuter rail systems.

I had defined that maglev would be unrealistic for that purpose, but it would serve well as a freight and passenger line between the major cities. If people don't intend to live in these 'steel caves,' then most goods would still have to go through Chicago, New York, LA, and other transportation hubs. Maglev lines would simply make it cheaper and more favorable than current diesel train lines.

If you attempted to use Maglev for short trips, then it would not function well in the US. For long trips, then it would come out on top.

@Qliveur:

Before anyone goes pointing the finger at maglev for being 'every bit as dirty as hydrogen,' then I'd like to see a hydrogen-powered vehicle that achieves a nearly 80% energy efficiency rating. I'd also love to see another solution that doesn't involve generating more energy when the issue is coping with fewer sources.

Oh, and your nuclear suggestion is not so clean either. Mining, milling, and fuel rod fabrication are actually very bad for the environment.
You haven't offered an alternative that does not use electricity. Many of those power plants use coal and oil. Nuclear is one of the cleanest alternatives. Solar is great, but efficiency is around 20% and it isn't a viable option in some areas because cloud cover tends to severely limit it's usefulness. Geothermal: not available in many areas. Hydroelectric: not available in many areas, and tends to kill off native fish in some areas. Wind: NOISY, kills birds, expensive to maintain, and again, not a viable option as it requires near constant wind.

Quite frankly MagLev is far less cost efficient. Not only that, but HST's CAN run on normal commuter tracks(at slower speeds obviously) whereas a maglev cannot go on any existing tracks(only around 1150km of the TGV is high speed, 75% is on conventional rail). Maglev efficiency is only slightly better than a normal train as the key resistances are air friction and tonnage wheel friction is only a slight efficiency drain.

What document are you referencing for 80% efficiency? I mean a turbine achieves 50 to 70% efficiency in the real world. But has a theoretical possibility at or above 90%.


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Old 04-28-2009, 04:06 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Darth_Yuthura View Post
@Qliveur:

Before anyone goes pointing the finger at maglev for being 'every bit as dirty as hydrogen,' then I'd like to see a hydrogen-powered vehicle that achieves a nearly 80% energy efficiency rating. I'd also love to see another solution that doesn't involve generating more energy when the issue is coping with fewer sources.
Why don't you just admit that you're anti-hydrogen because any solution that allows people to maintain their independence doesn't conform to your (and the people who are spoon-feeding you this crap) political agenda?
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Oh, and your nuclear suggestion is not so clean either. Mining, milling, and fuel rod fabrication are actually very bad for the environment.
So is just about every other practical means of producing electricity, only nuclear power is non-emissive. It is the best option that we have ATM, given the way that our power grid is set up. It is certainly not a permanent solution, but it will buy us enough time to come up with something better, like fusion, which is not very far in the future.

You know, I'm pretty certain that you weren't so anti-nuclear a few months ago. What changed your mind (as if I didn't already know)? I have a hard time keeping up with the latest environmentalist fad, which seems to change every time the political winds blow in a different direction. Could it be because environmentalists on the whole are far more interested in pushing a political agenda than they will ever be in saving the environment?

We would already have several more nuclear power plants in place and online had it not been for all of the environmentalist obstructionism, scare-mongering and general stupidity 20-30 years ago.


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Fix their home team score on the board to the debt clock, they can win every game 17,000,000,000,000 to 24. Losing team gets taxed by the IRS 100%, then droned."
-Toker

Last edited by Q; 04-28-2009 at 04:42 PM.
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Old 04-28-2009, 07:51 PM   #44
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Why don't you just admit that you're anti-hydrogen because any solution that allows people to maintain their independence doesn't conform to your (and the people who are spoon-feeding you this crap) political agenda? :¬:
Why would I? That's not remotely the reason. For your information, I DESPISE living in urban locations. I am living in an apartment with a guy above me who sounds like his feet are made of lead and where there's a lot of noise from traffic. Crime isn't that great an issue, though.

If any of you are thinking that I don't want privacy, access to a personal automobile, and avoiding noise from others; I am not asking others to do it so I don't have to. I only use a car when I have to travel more than 5 miles from my present location. If I were to ask people to do all this crap and I wouldn't do the same, that would be very hypocritical of me, wouldn't it?

As for the reason I'm against hydrogen, if you haven't already read and rejected my answer from before is that it would demand ADDITIONAL energy than what we are already consuming. Hydrogen isn't an energy source, but a means of transmission from another source. It's coal and nuclear energy converted to chemical energy, which is then converted to electric energy in your vehicle. If there were no loss of energy per each conversion, then I would be all for it. Electricity loses ~4% per 1000 KM it has to travel from the power plant to the destination, but hydrogen has at least a 10% loss.

The ONLY advantage it has over electricity is independence from a power grid or slow recharge time. That would give it its only edge over the electric car, but beyond that; it's very inefficient.

One other thing that contradicts such a bogus statement is that I supported the split-cycle engine LONG before it was introduced this month. Clearly, I am not advocating ONLY public transportation. I am advocating EFFICIENT transportation.

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So is just about every other practical means of producing electricity, only nuclear power is non-emissive. It is the best option that we have ATM, given the way that our power grid is set up. It is certainly not a permanent solution, but it will buy us enough time to come up with something better, like fusion, which is not very far in the future.
You're right, but you happened to say EXACTLY what I wanted.

When you accused maglev of not being 'clean,' you suddenly jumped to the opposite side to attack me for making the same kind of argument as you. Therefore, you're initial statement about maglev's energy not being clean is moot. With a flagrant disregard for the holes in your own solution, you don't exactly prove your point by attacking holes in my solution that actually are less severe than those of hydrogen.

Quote:
You know, I'm pretty certain that you weren't so anti-nuclear a few months ago. What changed your mind (as if I didn't already know)? I have a hard time keeping up with the latest environmentalist fad, which seems to change every time the political winds blow in a different direction. Could it be because environmentalists on the whole are far more interested in pushing a political agenda than they will ever be in saving the environment?
I actually do support nuclear above the other sources of energy both economically and environmentally.

Quote:
We would already have several more nuclear power plants in place and online had it not been for all of the environmentalist obstructionism, scare-mongering and general stupidity 20-30 years ago.
The first-generation plants are also used for political reference as 'expensive' and 'dangerous' and 'produce too much waste' Anyone with an ounce of sense could not claim that all nuclear waste over 50 years compares to the sheer quantity of ash produced by ONE coal plant annually.

All American nuclear plants were WAY too expensive to build, but because of obvious flaws in design and construction. Don't compare a modern reactor in France to a 50-year-old American design! I even support heavy-breeder reactors more heavily, if they happen to be twice as much to build. They happen to be at least 20 times as efficient with their uranium fuel.

Last edited by Jae Onasi; 04-28-2009 at 11:29 PM. Reason: fixed quote tags for clarity
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Old 04-28-2009, 08:08 PM   #45
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I actually do support nuclear above the other sources of energy both economically and environmentally. I was lying.
So, you're lying now... I bet that means you were lying about the Urban-being-better and how we should all give up our independence from our preferred surban environment?

Anyway, which is it? Were you lying about lying or not?

Edit: My first line in this post is a (rather poor) attempt at adding some levity to an otherwise serious discussion. [/disclaimer]


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Old 04-28-2009, 08:44 PM   #46
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I actually do support nuclear above the other sources of energy both economically and environmentally. I was lying.
Too late on the ghost edit, there, slick. This alone makes you not even worth acknowledging, let alone arguing with. As if I didn't already know this.

Say hello to my little friend, otherwise known as my ignore list.

And do yourself and this forum a favor and stop posting your nonsense lest someone actually take you seriously.


"They should rename the team to the Washington Government Sucks. Put Obama on the helmet. Line the entire walls of the stadium with the actual text of the ACA.
Fix their home team score on the board to the debt clock, they can win every game 17,000,000,000,000 to 24. Losing team gets taxed by the IRS 100%, then droned."
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Old 04-28-2009, 09:24 PM   #47
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Too late on the ghost edit, there, slick. This alone makes you not even worth acknowledging, let alone arguing with. As if I didn't already know this.

Say hello to my little friend, otherwise known as my ignore list.

And do yourself and this forum a favor and stop posting your nonsense lest someone actually take you seriously.
Obviously! I can't exactly edit something after I was already quoted!

And if you already knew that, then why did you go on under the assumption that I simply changed my mind? Answer: You assumed that I advocated against nuclear energy so you could supplant my argument with more irrelevant information. And you failed, miserably!

Quote:
You know, I'm pretty certain that you weren't so anti-nuclear a few months ago. What changed your mind
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Old 04-28-2009, 10:33 PM   #48
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And if you already knew that, then why did you go on under the assumption that I simply changed my mind? Answer: You assumed that I advocated against nuclear energy so you could supplant my argument with more irrelevant information. And you failed, miserably!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth_Yuthura View Post
Oh, and your nuclear suggestion is not so clean either. Mining, milling, and fuel rod fabrication are actually very bad for the environment.


"They should rename the team to the Washington Government Sucks. Put Obama on the helmet. Line the entire walls of the stadium with the actual text of the ACA.
Fix their home team score on the board to the debt clock, they can win every game 17,000,000,000,000 to 24. Losing team gets taxed by the IRS 100%, then droned."
-Toker

Last edited by Q; 04-28-2009 at 10:43 PM.
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Old 04-28-2009, 11:58 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qliveur View Post
Too late on the ghost edit, there, slick. This alone makes you not even worth acknowledging, let alone arguing with. As if I didn't already know this.

Say hello to my little friend, otherwise known as my ignore list.

And do yourself and this forum a favor and stop posting your nonsense lest someone actually take you seriously.
Qliveur, this does not meet the criteria of 'friendly discussion.' It does meet the description of flamebaiting, which would be good for you to avoid.


Quote:
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Obviously! I can't exactly edit something after I was already quoted!
Well, you can edit your own post, and did (I can see the edit-change logs for each post, the one where I fixed the quote tags, and the 2 edits you did). However, someone quoted your post before you made the edits.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darth_Yuthura
And if you already knew that, then why did you go on under the assumption that I simply changed my mind? Answer: You assumed that I advocated against nuclear energy so you could supplant my argument with more irrelevant information. And you failed, miserably!
I think he was working on the assumption that you had changed your mind rather than accusing you of lying, which was appopriate of him. Don't flamebait him further with accusations, please.

OK, everyone, time to tone it down. We're talking about choo-choo trains. No need to get personal about Thomas the Tank Engine here.


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Old 04-29-2009, 05:58 PM   #50
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Qliveur, this does not meet the criteria of 'friendly discussion.' It does meet the description of flamebaiting, which would be good for you to avoid.
My apologies, Jae. I thought that she was deliberately toying with me and playing silly games, and TBH I'm still unsure as to whether or not that was actually the case.

I'll keep it civil from here on out, regardless.


"They should rename the team to the Washington Government Sucks. Put Obama on the helmet. Line the entire walls of the stadium with the actual text of the ACA.
Fix their home team score on the board to the debt clock, they can win every game 17,000,000,000,000 to 24. Losing team gets taxed by the IRS 100%, then droned."
-Toker
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Old 04-30-2009, 05:41 AM   #51
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On a purely shallow note, maglev really lacks style.
You make maglev look like this: http://www.freewebs.com/futurecities/Maglev.jpg
That's got style.
you make maglev look like this: http://www.cleo.net.uk/images/library/maglev.jpg
And I'll walk.

Trains, they had style, a vision of the future with curves and wings and any assortment of unimaginable coolness. What do we have now? Minimalism. We can't even take the time to put effort into our work, every stove is like every other, every car like every other, a box for a home and a little square window and a little square door.

Back when, people pictured things like this: http://blog.modernmechanix.com/mags/...op_train_0.jpg would be in our future. Unrealistic? Sure, functional? not in the slightest. Visionary? You bet. Jules Verne gave us the Nautilus and we returned with an oversized piece of pipe.

I'm not sure what we'll develop in the future, but when it's going 150mph, and looking lame will make it go 155mph instead, give it some style and put in some real craftsmanship instead. Screw the extra 5 mph.


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Old 05-06-2009, 12:20 AM   #52
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Many of the suburban sprawl posts were moved to the Suburban sprawl thread. Carry on with maglev/train discussions here.


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Old 06-15-2009, 10:45 AM   #53
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Well here's a topic that hasn't been covered in a while. Why not revive it?

I see there is logic in replacing diesel trains with high-speed electric trains, even if US track isn't suited for high speed trains. It would make sense to begin replacing trains whenever it can be done and operate them at standard speeds when the grade of track demands it, such as with the Rocky Mountains. After that obstacle is cleared, then a new grade of track could be laid for high-speed rail operations. As new track is layed, these trains would simply have more routs to travel with less restriction on their speeds.

There are also possible options for diesel trains to be provided with overhead wire attachments to have electricity provided by the power grid while in high-speed operation. Most US trains are diesel electric, so that means they could act independent of a power grid or they can have it provided by another power plant. Since most American track don't have those overhead wires, it would make sense to keep using diesel electric trains, but provide them with a means to make use of those wires when they are in place.

Maglev unfortunately has no method of transitioning, since it is a very different kind of system than HSR.
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Old 06-15-2009, 12:10 PM   #54
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Electric works for me. However, you have to create the electricity somehow. What methods are you suggesting for that?


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Old 06-15-2009, 01:12 PM   #55
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Electric works for me. However, you have to create the electricity somehow. What methods are you suggesting for that?


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Old 06-15-2009, 01:21 PM   #56
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Electric works for me. However, you have to create the electricity somehow. What methods are you suggesting for that?
Well there's another reason you need a diesel engine for this to work: Electricity cannot be stored, so it must be constantly produced in order to assure peak demand is met, even when demand falls at night. You can't just start up and shut down powerplants within a matter of hours, so these trains would be suited to use electricity from the grid on off-peak hours while switching to its onboard diesel engine to take over during peak demand hours. This would serve to reduce transportation's dependence on oil while transitioning to electricity when it is available.
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Old 06-15-2009, 02:35 PM   #57
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Well there's another reason you need a diesel engine for this to work: Electricity cannot be stored, so it must be constantly produced in order to assure peak demand is met, even when demand falls at night.
I suppose that no one here has heard of an obscure invention from not to far ago, something called a "battery", which supposedly "stores" electricity for later use. Probably a load of sensationalist poppycock, though.
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Old 06-15-2009, 02:45 PM   #58
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I suppose that no one here has heard of an obscure invention from not to far ago, something called a "battery", which supposedly "stores" electricity for later use. Probably a load of sensationalist poppycock, though.
That was completely unnecessary and didn't add to the debate.

I knew of the invention you spoke of and also knew that it can not be implemented on a practical scale for use with a power grid. Those batteries on diesel hybrid engines only store energy to augment the electric motors, but nothing beyond that is needed for storage on a massive scale.

Plug-in hybrids are meant to store energy for trips, using a gasoline engine only to sustain and recharge those batteries. Those are not really feasible for something the size of a train.
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Old 06-18-2009, 10:54 AM   #59
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Just to clear it up, the diesel electric trains aren't capable of running on both systems. The diesel motors in newer more modern train engines acts as a generator, only running at a constant rate to generate electricity. All propulsion is done via electric motor. This way the trains burn vastly lower amounts of fuel.

It should be possible to make these trains run on both overhead wires when available or on the diesel-generated power when not....probably a bit much to retrofit but possible and feasible in newer models.

As for trains, I would be all for them if the fares are as cheap or involved less hassles as flying. Considering how far apart cities and destinations are here in the US (especially out west), trains would take many hours to days to get from A to B even at high speed through the nothingness that is Utah, and that's assuming non stops or infrequent stops. The beauty of the European rail system is that Europe is so much closer together than things are here, it makes more sense. For us, flying makes more sense.

It all comes down to money though; if it can a) be built economically, b) have low enough fares to where people choose rail over flying, and c) there is less of a hassle when compared to flying (more luxury, amenities, less pointlessly useless security, etc) or similar transit time considering security, delays, baggage, etc, rail would make more sense.


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Old 06-19-2009, 11:55 PM   #60
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Okay one issue that can never really be overcome with HSR is the train's maximum speed. There have been records for this kind of travel of about 300 MPH. That is really pushing the limits of how fast you can propel any kind of train. When reaching that speed, the friction between the tracks, wheels, and air resistance become limiting factors.

The beauty of Maglev is that it can potentially be free of all forces of friction and drag. Those systems that operate today are held back at ~350 mph because of air resistance. Any faster and you need more energy to overcome the air resistance which becomes more significant at higher speeds. Then there comes another issue in regards to that... noise.

The other major benefit of maglev is that it is quiet, but that advantage is negated when air resistance generates more sound than the friction between track and wheels. By creating a vacuum tube, you have the potential to speed a train beyond the sound barrier. Less air in the tube translates to a greater potential speed without the sonic boom. So the potential for maglev can be upwards of 6000 mph where HSR is at the best 450 mph before track friction becomes too high, not to mention the sound barrier becomes a factor.
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