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Old March 28th, 2008, 05:05 PM   #101
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Originally Posted by C-Beam View Post
Which proves that it is not the Transrapid technology which is causing the cost increase but other factors.
I don't know about that. Are there any calculations that give an indication of the costs of a normal high speed rail between Munich and the Airport? Maybe the the Maglev track requires more expensive track construction works?
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Old March 28th, 2008, 05:08 PM   #102
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It's too late building Maglevs in Europe. We have an extensive HSR and conventional rail network, and we are heading towards integration now. Maglev means isolated systems. It's like building motorways not compatible with existing cars and trucks.
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Old March 28th, 2008, 05:15 PM   #103
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well that's pretty much the case for every country that has a reasonably sized railway network. in other words, maglev is commercially impractical at the moment because:

(1) It's too expensive to construct
(2) It doesn't integrate with conventional rail networks well because you cannot run the maglev trains on the conventional rail, and you cannot run the conventional trains on the maglev rail.
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Old March 28th, 2008, 06:46 PM   #104
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Quote:
(1) It's too expensive to construct
I don't think so. The German government has made a comparison study between the costs of a new Transrapid and a new HSR track between Hamburg and Berlin. They came out to be roughly the same at around €17million per km. The terrain of that Hamburg-Berlin line was largely flat though. If you have terrain with hills the Transrapid track should be cheaper because it can follow the natural topology better than HSR tracks which have to be very straight and therefore require more tunnels and bridges.


Quote:
(2) It doesn't integrate with conventional rail networks well because you cannot run the maglev trains on the conventional rail, and you cannot run the conventional trains on the maglev rail.
That is most probably the biggest problem.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 02:56 AM   #105
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If Transrapid was such a great technology as some of the users here try to make believe, there would be more than one single Transrapid in public and commercial operation.

The truth is: There are hardly any advantages over conventional trains. Especially not on a commuter/automated people mover line, such as between Munich - Airport, where it wouldn't have been able to show its full speed potential. Classic railways are far more flexible, cheaper, they allow mixed transit, easy switches etc.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 05:34 PM   #106
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The ultimate problem with the technology is not the technology itself but more about how people are trying to market the technology.

There's only one Transrapid, but there is more than one maglev in commercial operation (see Linimo)

The best application for the technology is not to be a competitor to high-speed rail, but to be applied as an urban transit mode. It has more advantages in an urban setting than a high-speed setting, including cost performance (better energy efficency at low speed than high speed). LINIMO happens to be an application of maglev in an urban setting, and others, like Taipei, are planning to make similar applications of the technology.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 07:28 PM   #107
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
There are hardly any advantages over conventional trains. Especially not on a commuter/automated people mover line, such as between Munich - Airport, where it wouldn't have been able to show its full speed potential. Classic railways are far more flexible, cheaper, they allow mixed transit, easy switches etc.
Actually the Transrapid accelerates and breaks much faster than "classic railways" and is therefore very well suited for commuting people within a metro area.
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Old March 29th, 2008, 11:58 PM   #108
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It isn't! Its main advantage is speed and acceleration, but urban commuter transit requires smaller curves, which limits the maglev and makes it useless because they need incredibly large radii.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 12:29 AM   #109
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It isn't! Its main advantage is speed and acceleration, but urban commuter transit requires smaller curves, which limits the maglev and makes it useless because they need incredibly large radii.
Acceleration, yes, speed, no. There is no need for a maglev train to go fast to prove its worth. It offers several advantages over conventional rail in maintenance savings, low noise, rider comfort, and lower energy consumption. Except for rider comfort, all these advantages are negated when speeds exceed 400km/h.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 02:40 AM   #110
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The only real advantage theoretically is the lack of friction. Lower maintenance. Lower energy consumption. Less mechanical design complexities in suspension and other conventional bits of kit.

Discussed advantages which don't exist are anything to do with construction costs, radii of curve, gradients, passenger capacity (not mentioned on this thread though often brought up re maglev for some reason) etc etc. (Unless of course we are talking low speed commuter maglev in which gradients are significantly better than conventional).

The reality is that conventional rail took over a century of development to get refined enough to be an all-round effective product at high speed - and that was only because inner-city penetration already existed on the classic lines (without that high speed conventional rail would never have happened outside Japan). Even if Transrapid's figures are true, the vehicles on it's finished product are still just marooned Maglevs in a sea of conventional rail.

One day maglev will spread. It is better. The transrapid concept won't be it. To work it must evolve from conventional rail. They said changing guage was impossible but the Spanish have done it - I see the future of maglev to be hybrid conventional maglev trains.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 04:37 AM   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rheintram View Post
urban commuter transit requires smaller curves, which limits the maglev and makes it useless because they need incredibly large radii.
Are you sure that a 270-300m curve radius is "incredibly large"? I failed to find data for a comparable S-Bahn like the BR 423 here in Frankfurt but from my experience the curve radii of S-Bahn tracks are also quite large, we are not talking about a tram here. And furthermore when the S-Bahn has to go through a smaller curve it creates a hell of a noise.
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Old March 30th, 2008, 05:48 AM   #112
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Very interesting interview with Engelbert Kupka, the Barvarian government appointee for the transrapid project:

http://www.sueddeutsche.de/,tt2l1/ba...el/205/165732/

Translation

Sueddeutsche: Were you surprised about the end of the Transrapid project? Shouldn't it be common sense that a 6 months old calculation wouldn't be valid anymore?

Kupka: ...If within 6 months the price doubles in size you have to ask yourself what game is played here. I have the impression that parts of the consortium wanted to get out of the project as fast as possible and therefore quoted an unacceptable price.

Sueddeutsche: Isn't it vice versa? The industry stated that it was saddened that such an important reference project was canceled. There are voices who are saying that the new government under Beckstein didn't want the Transrapid project and therefore was more than happy to see unacceptable price increases.

Kupka: ...That is completely off the truth. If the industry does want to exit a project they of course wouldn't openly say "we are happy that the project was canceled".

...

Sueddeutsche: Should the industry now license or completely sell the Transrapid technology to a foreign country?

Kupka: I am actually very interested to know whether the consortium was still owning all rights and patents to the Transrapid technology at the point in time when they made the original offer and how potential licensing payments might have influenced the updated price.

Sueddeutsche: Are you suggesting that patents have been sold to China in the meantime?

Kupka: It was just reported in the press that Thyssen-Krupp is negotiating with China about a sale of the propulsion technology. What parts of the know-how is actually still owned by the companies? It is not logical that a Transrapid track in Germany should cost about 90 million € per km. Copper and steel prices are the same everywhere, only labor costs are cheaper in China, but that cannot result in triple the amount of costs that a similar track costs in China.

Sueddeutsche: Will the government now consider building an express S-Bahn track between Munich and the airport?

Kupka: The express S-Bahn is dead. It would cost over 2 billion € and Bavaria would have to pay at least 1 billion € of that sum. That is hardly possible.

...
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Last edited by C-Beam; March 30th, 2008 at 03:21 PM.
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Old February 10th, 2009, 11:26 PM   #113
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Erfurt-Nuremberg HSR line

I did a search and couldn't find anything as I was wondering if anyone had any pics or info on this HSR line in Bavaria and Thuringia.
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Old February 11th, 2009, 03:31 AM   #114
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Some pics and links:

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schnell...E2%80%93Erfurt
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Old February 11th, 2009, 04:25 AM   #115
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Thanks.
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Old February 12th, 2009, 09:04 PM   #116
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Nothing else? Darn. This looked like a really interesting project.
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Old February 12th, 2009, 09:18 PM   #117
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http://www.vde8.de
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Old February 13th, 2009, 08:23 AM   #118
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Nothing else? Darn. This looked like a really interesting project.
You're being much too kind, Basincreek. 20 years to build 107 km of railway line? I could find some much more poignant adjectives than "interesting". The Germans are truly moving into the high-speed era at a snail's pace.
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Old February 13th, 2009, 09:35 AM   #119
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You're being much too kind, Basincreek. 20 years to build 107 km of railway line? I could find some much more poignant adjectives than "interesting". The Germans are truly moving into the high-speed era at a snail's pace.
Well, this looks like it'll have almost as many tunnels as the Hannover-Wurzberg line and that took forever to build too.
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Old February 13th, 2009, 12:24 PM   #120
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Hum... Beijing-Shanghai has 400 km of tunnels and 200 km of bridges, and the line took five years to build. OK, let me say before someone else does it that I don't want to eulogise a dictatorship or blame a federal country for its lengthy planning process. That said... I don't think it should normally take 20 years to build 107 km of railway lines, and I strongly suspect that the reason it is taking so long is that this project has been used as a "fiscal pressure valve": turn it on when there was money in the treasury; turn it off where there wasn't.
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