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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 23rd, 2008, 03:15 PM   #401
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Svartmetall View Post
Is it just me, or does that train have an amazing number of pantographs?

Nice shots by the way!
Two per car; one for each direction of operation. Each car has a control cab, and they're used in married pairs for bi-directional operation. In operation, they always use the pantograph at the forward end.

Most of the cars are powered (1500V DC), but there are some trailers. The trailers have pantographs, too, for heat/air conditioning and lights.

The railroad's web site is here.
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 09:34 PM   #402
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Unless the DOT has the balls to build a totally new railroad, the best thing to do is to improve and electrify the railroad between New Haven and Springfield, and then on to Worcester like you said. That way, Hartford would be connected to the MTA and MBTA. I don't think that it would cost much...a spur line to Bradley Intl Airport is entirely possible as well.
Well, the best thing to do is to convince a state to do some upgrades on their section. That's the only way Amtrak upgrades have happened so far.
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 11:15 PM   #403
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rob_1412 View Post
Two per car; one for each direction of operation. Each car has a control cab, and they're used in married pairs for bi-directional operation. In operation, they always use the pantograph at the forward end.

Most of the cars are powered (1500V DC), but there are some trailers. The trailers have pantographs, too, for heat/air conditioning and lights.

The railroad's web site is here.
Heh, this cars look like from some kind of fantasy movie Mars train.
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Old January 23rd, 2008, 11:16 PM   #404
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rob_1412 View Post
Two per car; one for each direction of operation. Each car has a control cab, and they're used in married pairs for bi-directional operation. In operation, they always use the pantograph at the forward end.

Most of the cars are powered (1500V DC), but there are some trailers. The trailers have pantographs, too, for heat/air conditioning and lights.

The railroad's web site is here.
The thing is that most EMU's in Europe only have 1 pantograph for the whole train, sometimes more if made up of multiple EMU's so it looks strange to see so many on one train.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 02:30 AM   #405
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The thing is that most EMU's in Europe only have 1 pantograph for the whole train, sometimes more if made up of multiple EMU's so it looks strange to see so many on one train.
That's the difference. These are multiple EMUs. They'll operate train lengths anywhere from two to ten cars, depending on the route segment and time of day/passenger loading. They can't operate single cars because the cars only have control cabs in one end, and the railroad doesn't have any place I know of where they can turn a car or train around - no wyes or turntables.

I don't know why they have to have separate pantographs for eastbound or westbound operation, though.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 06:28 AM   #406
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I don't know why they have to have separate pantographs for eastbound or westbound operation, though.
I'm quite sure they only need one but have the second as a spare. These things also create lots of sparks, which can damage roof equipment located right behind. Therefore, when having two pantographs so close to each other, it's usually safer to use the latter one.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 03:18 PM   #407
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I love those pictures! You wouldn't see our track gangs working in that weather.
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Old January 24th, 2008, 10:10 PM   #408
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I love those pictures! You wouldn't see our track gangs working in that weather.
Probably because Brisbane doesn't get that kind of weather (you lucky things)
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Old January 24th, 2008, 11:31 PM   #409
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The state is funding the commuter rail to Springfield, on Amtrak-used rail. We will have commuter rail by 2010-11. I believe that it will be improved as well, but I have not heard anything about electrification. A few politicians (including the mayor of Hartford) are pushing HSR, with a spur link to the airport.

As for the rail from Springfield to Worcester, I have heard extending it, but there are no concrete plans. But that's in Massachusetts, a state with a more transit-friendly government. It would be a no-brainer to extend MBTA there, IMO.
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Old February 5th, 2008, 05:26 AM   #410
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Can you believe it, the so called HSR for the SE USA - DC-->Charlotte is going to be 110mph top speed? And that may not even happen at all!!! HAHAHAHA, is this some kind of a joke. Why don't americans understand what HSR is? Are they that parochial, do they not look beyond their borders? HSR is greater than 150mph. Also, its disgusting that even this lametable 110mph speed train may not happen due to anti-rail, pro-highway idiots and scumbags who are stuck in the past and think rail is for old people or for romantic journeys only. This country needs to wake up. I can't wait for oil to rise, then these people will be singing a different tune!! haha, what creeps!!

If you dare google it, search for HSR south east USA -- prepare to be disgusted.
If its any comfort you can always be more disgusted by the danish railway system - all speeds reduced from 110 to 75 mph because of bad tracks.
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Old February 6th, 2008, 08:20 AM   #411
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silly thread. Simple check with wikipedia will tell you that offical designation of high speed rail travel in the United States is > 90mph.

just another my gun is bigger than youurs jealousy contest. Defination in the EU is 124mph. In China is >180km/h
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Old February 6th, 2008, 08:33 AM   #412
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the last 50 years have seen America and Americans become extremely wealthy. with this wealth, americans have become very complacent in their consumption to the point where there are glaring inefficiencies in every aspect of their economy and transportation network. being as resourceful as they are, once the US reaches its "breaking point," you will begin to see more Americans coming to their senses. theyve already reached that point with regard to their use of SUVs and soon enough there will be a change when it comes to seeing high speed rail implemented more widely throughout the country. there will not be an LA-NYC rail line (for the same reason that European business will not travel by rail between Leeds and Milan), but proper high speed rail lines between major cities in areas such as the North East in the next 30 years is not very far fetched at all.
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Old February 11th, 2008, 06:23 AM   #413
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I am very surpirsed that your powers-that-be will not build high speed rail. I guess it is hard ask to build rail infrastructure when flights are so cheap and the support infrastructure is already in place.
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Old February 11th, 2008, 09:18 AM   #414
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Few points here.

The political will IS the key problem, no two ways about it. Miamicanes is trying to argue against it, but he's fighting a losing battle. Flying is a pain in the neck. I know that quite well, especially after 9/11 and the security paranoia that has followed. HSR costs money to build and a lot of it, but its not unfeasible. The reality is that the US federal government alone spends more than $2.5 TRILLION every year. You gonna tell me you cannot ram a bit of that through to help your country's future? Infrastructure problems are endemic in the US, because its expensive and doesn't buy votes. Traffic is a massive problem here, and as others point out, it's just easier to build more roads and airports than to try and get people to use rail lines. This is the same country that when France was building the TGV had most of its rail officials calling for the outright death of passenger rail in North America.

Fixing that is gonna be hard. The last major whack to Americans' habits was when the energy crisis hit in 1973-74. The problem is that people tend to go back to their old habits. So, in order to move people from planes and cars to trains you need to make it a more attractive alternative. 110 mph is not gonna cut it, because Amtrak can do 80 and yet never does, because the freight railways own the tracks and they have been jammed with traffic for a decade. The only way to get the railways to work is to build new right of way - and building one for 110 is often little if any cheaper than building one for 180+, so the point of the medium-speed systems is completely non-existent. It makes no sense.

The NEC has got no issues with freight traffic, since freight movements have been all but banned from the NEC since the Colonial wreck in January 1987. The problem there is that the NEC frequently has trains that cannot move as fast as the Acela can (The Acela is good for 180 miles an hour, but rarely shows it) and there is too many crossings and the curves are too tight. That can be fixed, but costs money.
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Old February 11th, 2008, 07:25 PM   #415
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Originally Posted by aquablue View Post
Other areas include the midwest hub - chicago (9 million) - st louis - detroit - minn. - Indy. Florida, which is growing at a fast pace - Miami - Orlando - Tampa.

So, density is no argument against HSR. You can't look at the entire country density - you must look at certain corridor density.
The hardest issue is that we already have thousands of flights across these regions every day. It's hard to get people to invest in high speed rail when we already have all these highways and airplanes. People are use to them, and they get you where you want to go. People really don't want to spend billions of dollars to connect cities like Minn. to Milwaukee to Chicago to St. Louis with high speed rail. Unless you're traveling between two of them that are directly connected and close - you're just going to take a quick flight from city to city.

For instance Chicago and St. Louis have direct flights daily for $60 that run at least once an hour from before dawn to well into the night. The distance is around 475KM and takes one hour by plane.

I'm not saying I don't agree with you, but there's more to it than all Americans and our government are completely stupid (ok, maybe the government is). I don't own a car, so I just fly everywhere, but I'd certainly take a train if there was one, and it was roughly as quick as flying. The key word is "if".

Most any city in America with more than 75,000 people will have an airport with commercial flights.

I'm from a very rural area in Iowa, and I fly back from Chicago to Cedar Rapids a few times a year (if I don't rent a car). The distance is 340KM, and it takes around 40 minutes in a plane. The city with the airport is only 175,000 in the urban area, but they still operate almost 100 takeoffs/landing every day to 11 different cities around the country. This is a decent amount of service for a small municipal airport in a rural area, last year they saw over 1,000,000 passengers.

We'd have to spend billions of dollars to upgrade the rail infrastructure, and we also see MASSIVE amount of rail freight in the country. We have hundreds of thousands of KM of rail in place, but most of it is very clogged with freight trains. You'd have to build new track to safely move the high speed trains around the freight trains. This is going to cost a ton, and take up land already in use for farms/cities, etc.

USA railroads move over 4 times as much freight as all railroad companies in Western Europe combined. It's very difficult to throw more passanger trains on those already clogged lines. The freight rail in this country has really exploded as the passenger rail greatly diminished. Currently there's not enough room to put all those trains back on the lines, and people are happy with flying - so it's a very difficult issue to confront.

Last edited by Chicagoago; February 11th, 2008 at 07:32 PM.
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Old February 11th, 2008, 07:28 PM   #416
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We want our highways built with public funds and have no tolls, but we want our rail to be private and self-sufficient.

Anyone else laugh at the idiocy of John Q. American?
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Old February 11th, 2008, 07:35 PM   #417
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Billion passenger KM's in 2006:

European Union: 371.27
United States: 22.5

Billion-tonne KM in 2006 for rail freight:

United States: 2840,1
European Union: 382,7
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Old February 11th, 2008, 08:04 PM   #418
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Quote:
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Billion passenger KM's in 2006:

European Union: 371.27
United States: 22.5

Billion-tonne KM in 2006 for rail freight:

United States: 2840,1
European Union: 382,7
HSR does not (typically) include freight.
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Old February 11th, 2008, 10:53 PM   #419
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I am very surpirsed that your powers-that-be will not build high speed rail. I guess it is hard ask to build rail infrastructure when flights are so cheap and the support infrastructure is already in place.
no, its hard to build high speed anything when your airlines give so much contributions into congressional campigne funds.
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Old February 12th, 2008, 03:53 AM   #420
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no, its hard to build high speed anything when your airlines give so much contributions into congressional campigne funds.
EXACTLY.
Not to mention the highway lobbies.
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