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View Poll Results: Should the US build or improve it's HSR network?
Yes 249 89.57%
No 29 10.43%
Voters: 278. You may not vote on this poll

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Old January 18th, 2012, 03:19 AM   #2921
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Building a high-speed rail network that will ultimately link Los Angeles with Chicago seems highly unlikely. Denver and Salt Lake City, for instance, are too far apart from anywhere else to have high-speed rail, and so are Tucson and Phoenix except in relate to each other.
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Old January 18th, 2012, 03:23 AM   #2922
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suburbanist
Building a high-speed rail network that will ultimately link Los Angeles with Chicago seems highly unlikely. Denver and Salt Lake City, for instance, are too far apart from anywhere else to have high-speed rail, and so are Tucson and Phoenix except in relate to each other.
That was my point...it makes sense to operate the two (i.e. the state networks/commuter real on one hand and the national network in the other). That would let them prioritize the must viable routes first. And allow the others to happen as they may.
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Old January 22nd, 2012, 11:04 AM   #2923
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Old January 22nd, 2012, 03:03 PM   #2924
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Wrong thread i think.
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Old January 22nd, 2012, 03:33 PM   #2925
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Old January 22nd, 2012, 05:56 PM   #2926
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This should be in the train races thread.

Nothing to do with HSR.
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Old January 23rd, 2012, 11:34 AM   #2927
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Well Acela is technically HSR so the video should stay.
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Old January 23rd, 2012, 10:34 PM   #2928
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Some early morning recently, NPR broadcast a clip of CA governor's recent speech somewhere in his state, vowing HSR there is going to be adopted after all.

I've been thinking lately that conventional HSR might not be the better mode, and finding myself more and more suspecting magnetic levitation to be far more viable. I also reckon that future advancements and improvements in this new mode of HSR could be devised into the infrastructure in anticipation of future upgrades, for surely increased velocities would eventually be possible. Wouldn't it instead be far easier to drive pilings into the ground than levelling and fussing with a surface-based ROW? What about bird strikes on levitated stock, for instance?

Ultimately, what overall does America wish to commit?
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Old January 24th, 2012, 12:49 AM   #2929
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Even accepting that ROW and other land-based concerns make traditional HSR more expensive in California than it would be otherwise, I'd still tend to think that maglev would be even more expensive still. Of course, presenting that option ignores the fact that traditional HSR can be built on totally elevated tracks. If memory serves, a lot of the Beijing-Shanghai HSR line is built on viaducts.

And while I suppose that maglev-level speeds of say 300mph would make it more marketable, the extra cost of such a high speed line would be absolutely prohibitive. This seems especially true when either way, we're introducing a new form of transportation with an unproven ridership base. Though that's an argument used against public transit all across the country, one I don't think is particularly valid.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 03:12 AM   #2930
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The Shanghai Maglev is extremely shakey at 431 km/h. The Beijing-Tianjin HSR at 334 km/h was far more smooth.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 10:18 AM   #2931
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trainrover View Post
Some early morning recently, NPR broadcast a clip of CA governor's recent speech somewhere in his state, vowing HSR there is going to be adopted after all.

I've been thinking lately that conventional HSR might not be the better mode, and finding myself more and more suspecting magnetic levitation to be far more viable. I also reckon that future advancements and improvements in this new mode of HSR could be devised into the infrastructure in anticipation of future upgrades, for surely increased velocities would eventually be possible. Wouldn't it instead be far easier to drive pilings into the ground than levelling and fussing with a surface-based ROW? What about bird strikes on levitated stock, for instance?

Ultimately, what overall does America wish to commit?
A full viaduct based HSR line is ideal, but the cost may be too high to be built here. Given the financial CAHSR faces I don't think maglev is even remotely feasible in the next decade or so. Regarding bird strikes I don't think it's a huge issue at all, all of the 300+km/h HSR trains are designed to withstand a bird strike on the nose. I've seen many CRH and TGV trains with a bloody nose.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 02:52 PM   #2932
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Magnetic levitation would, on itself, draw more or less passengers AFAIK. It is just a different traction method, with some - but not much - repercussions on the traveler experience - like the "shakey" feeling because of lack of mechanical traction, akin to that of an airbone airplane.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 03:24 PM   #2933
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trainrover View Post
Some early morning recently, NPR broadcast a clip of CA governor's recent speech somewhere in his state, vowing HSR there is going to be adopted after all.

I've been thinking lately that conventional HSR might not be the better mode, and finding myself more and more suspecting magnetic levitation to be far more viable. I also reckon that future advancements and improvements in this new mode of HSR could be devised into the infrastructure in anticipation of future upgrades, for surely increased velocities would eventually be possible. Wouldn't it instead be far easier to drive pilings into the ground than levelling and fussing with a surface-based ROW? What about bird strikes on levitated stock, for instance?

Ultimately, what overall does America wish to commit?
Maglev is not feasible for California HSR because the HSR service is expected to share infrastructure (i.e. yards, station platforms); using maglev wouldn't work here because obviously magnetic levitation and steel-on-steel technology aren't very compatible. Second, people have already talked about costs.

I'm not sure about this, but please feel free to prove me wrong, but I think that when Obama set aside funds for high speed rail, I think they were meant specifically for steel-wheel-on-steel-rail trains in excess of 100 mph; in that event, California's $3 billion of federal funding would be void.

Lastly, I want to point out that maglev technology is still in an infantile stage of development. There is only one service in the world and the market does not feel that it is ready for such kinds of investment.

I also think that it'll be a miracle if California even gets to build a traditional steel-on-steel HSR system, given the state of affairs as it is now. People talk about how California should emulate Spain's success, but Spain's AVE network was built 1) with united political support 2) when there were significant cash reserves to finance it. Although I fully support high speed rail I must question the way CHSRA is running things. I'd be equally tipsy as the Republicans if they wanted to start construction when they have only $6 billion when the project is expected to cost $98 billion.

However, what irks me the most about this whole HSR debate in America is how the critics constantly deride it as some sort of "fantasy choo choo". It's immature.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 04:36 PM   #2934
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Swordsman View Post
Maglev is not feasible for California HSR because the HSR service is expected to share infrastructure (i.e. yards, station platforms); using maglev wouldn't work here because obviously magnetic levitation and steel-on-steel technology aren't very compatible. Second, people have already talked about costs.
With the JR Central maglev method, with a little renovation covering the tracks with tarmac the same way you do at same level crossing both station platforms and yards can be shared since under 100Km/h the JR central system runs on tire.
Construction cost was underestimated for steel on steel technology and overestimated for maglev so another analysis should be done and discussed.

As for the market thinking it is not ready, you'll also need to take into consideration the time gap these kind of projects are considered and actually put into construction. JR Central had already placed commitment to the system announcing Chuo-Shinkansen utilizing the maglev technology a year ago but will not go on line till 2027. Vietnam, Malaysia and possibly Australia may consider the technology depending on when they actually fix their plan.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 04:53 PM   #2935
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Originally Posted by SamuraiBlue View Post
With the JR Central maglev method, with a little renovation covering the tracks with tarmac the same way you do at same level crossing both station platforms and yards can be shared since under 100Km/h the JR central system runs on tire.
Construction cost was underestimated for steel on steel technology and overestimated for maglev so another analysis should be done and discussed.

As for the market thinking it is not ready, you'll also need to take into consideration the time gap these kind of projects are considered and actually put into construction. JR Central had already placed commitment to the system announcing Chuo-Shinkansen utilizing the maglev technology a year ago but will not go on line till 2027. Vietnam, Malaysia and possibly Australia may consider the technology depending on when they actually fix their plan.
No matter what kind of re-evaluation, the results still are: maglev is much more expensive than wheeled HSR. Since the primary bickering about CHSR is already about cost, and since most Americans obviously have never even experienced HSR, I do not think that maglev is a feasible option.

If Japan has the guts to do it, kudos to them. But I do not think that it would be wise for America, who has not significantly invested in rail for over 50 years, to suddenly try and jump ahead of the game and go maglev. We're all criticizing to a degree how China's attempt to internalize and absorb 40 years of technological development in less than five, I don't see why America should follow that same path.

They want to do a test stretch in Florida? Fine (Too bad Rick Scott killed it). But build an 800 km maglev line when the only other operational line is merely 20 km long? I don't think so. Even China started its HSR program with a short line (Beijing - Tianjin); and America is going to jumpstart maglev technology with a line from SF to LA?

It's impractical.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 06:26 PM   #2936
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aquaticko View Post
maglev would be even more expensive still
Quote:
Originally Posted by SamuraiBlue View Post
market thinking
Regulatory action(s), measure(s) would fix that easily ... lord knows the world needs some ...



Quote:
Originally Posted by Silly_Walks View Post
The Shanghai Maglev is extremely shakey at 431 km/h
So were sputniks (and all?)



Quote:
Originally Posted by hmmwv View Post
Regarding bird strikes I don't think it's a huge issue at all, all of the 300+km/h HSR trains are designed to withstand a bird strike on the nose. I've seen many CRH and TGV trains with a bloody nose.
Infiltration into the magnetic 'mechanics' by biologic debris is more what I had in mind.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Swordsman View Post
magnetic levitation and steel-on-steel technology aren't very compatible
Hallelujah! since the speeds themselves aren't inherently compatible.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Swordsman View Post
magnetic levitation and steel-on-steel technology aren't very compatible people have already talked about costs
...while atogether shunning those that risk being incurred onto the commercial aviation sector, probably




Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver Swordsman View Post
It's impractical
...for the time being; thus, I put this out there again:
Quote:
Originally Posted by trainrover View Post
Ultimately, what overall does America wish to commit?

Maybe the durability of high-stressed, carbon, plastic rails devised in the future might surpass today's quality of high-tensile(?) steel, yet I don't see conventional HSR possessing any room for future improvements; it's as though its potential has already reached its maximum. However, maglev strikes me as more promising
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Last edited by trainrover; January 24th, 2012 at 06:32 PM.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 07:30 PM   #2937
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You are making the (big) assumption that America is planning for the future. We can barely get a project that means today's demand going, let along having the vision for future infrastructure technology.
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Old January 24th, 2012, 10:21 PM   #2938
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I am, just by asking what it wishes? Of course you Americans can get large projects going, it's the commitment that appears to be lacking. I question one's (your) usage of "we", mind you (e.g., must we own our respective powerbrokers' ignorance?).
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Old January 25th, 2012, 12:41 AM   #2939
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We Americans have our wishes and commitment set on more manly projects such as space station and aircraft carriers, public transportation is considering a thing for commies and sissies. Jokes aside, the current political infighting is sucking the lifeblood out of this country, politicians only worry about their office and nobody gives a damn about what's good for the US ten years down the road. Infrastructure investment is not something that can bring immediate and measurable benefit to our elected officials, thus it can only be used as political ammunition to attack opponents. I was hoping that there will be a Sputnik moment in our generation to ignite the interest and commitment in this area, but I'm not holding my breath for it.
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Old January 25th, 2012, 03:20 AM   #2940
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America's not the only country suffering ... it's out with the nation state and in with the corporate one, as far as I can tell
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