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The Legend
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Why would this ever be necessary?
In my opinion the Metro are falling behind. For years and years the Metro decided against bringing out a type of Oyster card when everyone was asking for one. They bring it out when all transport systems around the world are shifting to direct payments which makes the movement of passengers faster and quicker, and does away with incorrectly inputting the wrong fare, and either being over or under charged.

As for the USB example, I think I spell it out correctly. By the time the new Metro trains come out with USB charging ports, technology will have moved away from using that port, rendering them immediately useless. If they swapped it out for USB C ports then passengers will be able to use them as intended.
 

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In my opinion the Metro are falling behind. For years and years the Metro decided against bringing out a type of Oyster card when everyone was asking for one. They bring it out when all transport systems around the world are shifting to direct payments which makes the movement of passengers faster and quicker, and does away with incorrectly inputting the wrong fare, and either being over or under charged.

As for the USB example, I think I spell it out correctly. By the time the new Metro trains come out with USB charging ports, technology will have moved away from using that port, rendering them immediately useless. If they swapped it out for USB C ports then passengers will be able to use them as intended.
I meant the necessity of the Metro atop a lorry delivery service! lol

I agree with your tech review of the metro. I always felt it was ahead of the curve with the mobile phone repeater tech.

There should really be a national set of Oyster systems for all public transport, integrating together. Sadly (as track and trace and mobile apps prove) being so centralised, we either enrol it at too big a scale and mess up, or don't bother at all.
 

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Good letter bigchrisfgb I had not thought about USB type C being ubiquitous but if these new metros are in service for as long as the current ones that'll be a must.

Regarding ticketing that will be a big job to upgrade the network and expensive. But for me when doing such a massive capital project such as new rolling stock tacking this project onto that one seems sensible. Of course Nexus would have to go to central government for the money to do such an upgrade. Shame North of Tyne CA couldn't be involved in some way but think boundaries would kill off their involvement.
 

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This is already being done led by TfN. It’s vital for integration that more individual operators don’t do their own thing as bus operators have done. It’s the myriad of operators and systems that make this very difficult. Oyster is redundant for future smart card technology, but it must be remembered not everyone will be in a position to use direct payment.


 

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King of Bernicia
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From the headline its great news. Rather strange its for the whole of the north rather than by locality, but then thats better. Lets make it nationwide while we're at it.
But in practice...isn't this just creating a smart card that will be as much use as e.g. pop cards on the bus? You can theoretically pay with them but...There's no point. There's no true integration.
 

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As for the USB example, I think I spell it out correctly. By the time the new Metro trains come out with USB charging ports, technology will have moved away from using that port, rendering them immediately useless. If they swapped it out for USB C ports then passengers will be able to use them as intended.
You're right, plus the new USB 4 standard coming out late this year / next year will use only the Type C connector.
 

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You're right, plus the new USB 4 standard coming out late this year / next year will use only the Type C connector.
If it's just a charging point, we'll be fine for many years to come with standard USB Type A sockets. And even if USB Type C displaces it, the lifespan of the charging points - based on a finite number of insertion cycles - will be much less than that of the new Metrocars, so the USB sockets can be upgraded after a few years.
 

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I think you're missing the pint of the technology. If a port in the seat has a USB A or B type connector, it can easily be changed to a USB C. You just change the output adaptor, the input (behind the seats is only delivering power which is already hard-wired in). Maybe change the ampage and connector and it's an easy upgrade for years to come until we all go wireless.
 

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I think you're missing the pint of the technology. If a port in the seat has a USB A or B type connector, it can easily be changed to a USB C. You just change the output adaptor, the input (behind the seats is only delivering power which is already hard-wired in). Maybe change the ampage and connector and it's an easy upgrade for years to come until we all go wireless.
They're making them now though, many phones already come with USB C. Why roll out with something already obsolete knowing you're going to have to change it within 5 years at the most?
 

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They're making them now though, many phones already come with USB C. Why roll out with something already obsolete knowing you're going to have to change it within 5 years at the most?
Because they will have to replace them anyway. If a port is used just five times a day, it will only take around five years to reach an optimistic service lifetime of 10,000 insertion cycles - and this in an environment subject to constant vibration and where it is unlikely to be treated gently.

And for now, Type A is still very much the universal solution. Plenty of people don't know what to do with USB-C, but everyone has a USB Type A charging cable for their device. (There's nothing stopping them from installing both, of course.)
 

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Because they will have to replace them anyway. If a port is used just five times a day, it will only take around five years to reach an optimistic service lifetime of 10,000 insertion cycles - and this in an environment subject to constant vibration and where it is unlikely to be treated gently.

And for now, Type A is still very much the universal solution. Plenty of people don't know what to do with USB-C, but everyone has a USB Type A charging cable for their device. (There's nothing stopping them from installing both, of course.)

Yes, for the forseeable future USB C will be a very rare thing, we need to still cater for what the vast majority of users want and need !
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A 12 week blockade! Whilst required to do this sort of work, it will no doubt go down with commuters like the proverbial s**t sarnie!

I'm guessing this is going to involve some track replacement work too, as 12 weeks with full possession is quite a length of time to install some new S&C, catenary and signaling kit.
 

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A 12 week blockade! Whilst required to do this sort of work, it will no doubt go down with commuters like the proverbial s**t sarnie!

I'm guessing this is going to involve some track replacement work too, as 12 weeks with full possession is quite a length of time to install some new S&C, catenary and signaling kit.
Do I recall correctly that the route, for the most part, is currently one bi-directional line for freight, and one bi-directional line for Metro, exempt at Metro stations where there is a passing loop, effecting meaning two Metro lines (for the length of the station), plus the freight line - i.e three tracks wide at stations.
...I'm guessing the freight line will be used for South Shields bound Metros & freight trains, and the current Metro line will be used for Pelaw bound Metros & freight trains. So my question is, will the short sections of freight line that currently bypass the stations be taken out, or will freight trains use them as a passing loop rather than travelling through the Metro platforms? It doesn't really make any difference of course as freight/heavy rail trains pass through Metro platforms on the Sunderland line, I was just curious really. Does anyone know?

(EDIT - surely they'll be removed as that'd be more points to maintain.... unless there'd be a chance Metro's would be held in a station to allow a freight train to get infront?)
 

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There’s maximum one freight path an hour and usually only one of those used per day each way, on a few days a week, so you wouldn’t think there will be a great need for passing loops. There’s a long loop at Pelaw to accommodate a waiting freight. Having said that I notice the route from Jarrow Shell to Pelaw is timed at a snails pace 15 minutes at the moment which might mean a loop is kept to allow a 10 or 12 minute Metro frequency, or the freight passes much more quickly because of the work.
 

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The Legend
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I have received this email in response.

Thank you for your email. We are currently conducting customer trials with Google on an android phone-based payment application, initially for season tickets and then pay-as-you-go. We hope to make this generally available later this year. We approached Apple to take part in a parallel project but it has yet to sign up. We have also prepared a business case for the Government to fund creation of multi-modal pay-as-you-go and contactless payment technology across all public transport in North East England, including Metro. The scale of investment needed compared to our operating model means external funding would be essential to develop this. Our current smart ticketing, through the Pop card, allows people to upload balance online and avoid any purchase or dwell time in stations – though we would like to offer pure contactless as a next step from this.
In terms of USB ports – thank you for the feedback on USB C ports. The ports illustrated in the design are representative at this stage. A final specification will be made based on an analysis of current and emerging technology at a later stage in the design process.
 

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Article from Nexus website.
40 years of Metro.
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On 11 August 2020 Tyne and Wear Metro will celebrate its 40th anniversary – having carried over 1.5 billion people since it opened in 1980.

We'll be celebrating in different ways though. Don’t miss the opportunity to join in our celebrations as we commemorate 40 years of Tyne and Wear Metro - regular updates will appear here and you can follow us on Facebook and Instagram.

Time has flown since that memorable summer’s day when the network first opened to passengers.

We are sure that 11th August 1980 is a day that will live long in the memory for those who were there, and since then it has become a part of everyday life for thousands of people, who rely on the service to get to places of work, schools, colleges, and for leisure activities.

READ MORE: 40 years of Metro | nexus.org.uk
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Depot Virtual Tour

Seeing as we couldn’t let you look round in person this year, we are bringing the depot to you, virtually. You'll get to look round the inspection sheds and hear from the staff charged with keeping the fleet moving, no small task given the age of the current trains. Our depot in South Gosforth is a unique building and has quite a heritage of its own. On the tour you will find out more about what the building was used for before Metro. There may be some surprises in store, so make sure you tune in.

We will release more details very soon!

 

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Tyne and Wear Metro gets £8.5m boost in third government bailout – but no promise to cover huge long-term losses

Chronicle Live website article from 08/08/20

EXTRACT

Metro gets £8.5m boost in third government bailout – but no promise to cover huge long-term losses

The cash, a third round of support confirmed by Chancellor Rishi Sunak, is expected to prop up the struggling network until the end of October

At the height of the coronavirus lockdown, Metro was losing around £1 million a week as passenger numbers plummeted by up to 95%.

And while more people are gradually going back onto public transport again, network operator Nexus estimates that it still faces a weekly deficit of around £500,000 without government support.

Nexus chief operating officer, Martin Kearney, said: “This is vital funding support that will enable us to sustain Metro services while customer numbers continue to recover.


Full article on Metro gets £8.5m boost in third government bailout

KEN
 
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