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French train travels 357mph
Old 04-03-2007, 08:08 PM   #1
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French train travels 357mph

The new French bullet train was clocked at 357 mph. That means we could travel by train from NY to Chicago in two hours. ---- that will teach the airlines. I wish we had an infrastructure that would sustain train travel like the European system.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 01:04 AM   #2
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Re: French train travels 357mph

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Originally Posted by janeeyre
The new French bullet train was clocked at 357 mph. That means we could travel by train from NY to Chicago in two hours. ---- that will teach the airlines. I wish we had an infrastructure that would sustain train travel like the European system.
I think the first priority should be braking systems!

I wonder how they know the tracks are safe. Engineers don't get much reaction time at over 500 fps.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 01:47 AM   #3
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Me too. I really enjoyed backpacking through Europe because I could get to all major cities by train, and many of them had subways or above-ground rail systems for public transport, in addition to the lesser used but still efficient and helpful bus systems.

Occasionally it frustrates me that I have to drive everywhere here, but then I'm thankful that I drive very little as a whole and my commute is, at the longest, 2.5 miles, and at the shortest, fall out of bed.

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I wish we had an infrastructure that would sustain train travel like the European system.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 05:45 AM   #4
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Our AMTRAK train system could use an upgrade. We rode on one from Anaheim to San Juan Capistrano a few years ago. It was an effective way to travel, but it probably only did about 60 mph.

I believe we have not developed that type of transportation because of (relatively) low cost gas (compared to Europe). Plus, we have a very good interstate highway system.... Americans are in love with automobiles.

I would like to se an alternative to airline travel also. High speed rail seems like a good idea. I have read that one impediment is the cost of laying down new rail systems that can accomodate trains at that speed. Apparently that is the huge expenditure. The actual trains are not cheap either. I can can imagine that a high speed system like that probably require rigorous maintenance and Q/A.

If we wind up with gas prices around $5/gallon... I would expect that we will begin developing rail systems.


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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 10:09 AM   #5
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Re: French train travels 357mph

What's the current state of Amtrak? Wasn't it losing money despite heavy government subsidies?
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 10:32 AM   #6
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Re: French train travels 357mph

"...new French bullet train was clocked at 357 mph..."

Where were they retreating to?

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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 10:59 AM   #7
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Exactly the problem. What incentive does the company have to improve it's internal processes and cost structures when they know they're losing money and the government will always bail them out?

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What's the current state of Amtrak? Wasn't it losing money despite heavy government subsidies?
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 12:36 PM   #8
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Re: French train travels 357mph

So true, See what happens when the government gets involved. And we want them to handle our health care (think VA hospitals)--- not me.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 03:14 PM   #9
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Rode a German one last summer at 450 kmh, which is about 270mph. Wow. We sure got places in a hurry. The only issue was when you go into a tunnel it makes your ears pound initially from the air pressure -- I guess the train is like a big piston moving through a cylinder and compressing the air in front of it? The European technology is safe enough for me... Amtrak tracks are the ones I worry about -- we now have trains in the Northeast Corridor that could do these 200mph+ speeds, but the tracks will never handle it.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-04-2007, 04:04 PM   #10
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peaceful_Warrior
Exactly the problem. What incentive does the company have to improve it's internal processes and cost structures when they know they're losing money and the government will always bail them out?
AFAIK the European train systems are subsudized far, far more than AMTRAK
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-05-2007, 12:30 AM   #11
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Re: French train travels 357mph

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Originally Posted by yakers
AFAIK the European train systems are subsudized far, far more than AMTRAK

Very much so... they are considered part of public transportation...

One of the problems with trains in the US is the long distances.. yes, a NY to Boston or other short hauls (Dallas to Houston here) would be something that would make sense... but a lot of the trains in London was to get workers to London in the morning and back home in the evening.. same as the trains in NY... to work and then home..

SO, if you want to make them part of the commute system... subsidize...

Another thing to remember.... there is not competition on these trips... for flying you can take one of many airlines... for trains.. you take the one and only 'company' that runs that route.. Germany has ICE, Switzerland has their own etc...
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-05-2007, 11:29 AM   #12
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
What's the current state of Amtrak? Wasn't it losing money despite heavy government subsidies?
Yes, to the tune of $500-$600 MILLION a YEAR................ :P :P :P

It's one of those budget items that Congress won't get rid of.......
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-05-2007, 07:41 PM   #13
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Re: French train travels 357mph

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Yes, to the tune of $500-$600 MILLION a YEAR................ :P :P :P

It's one of those budget items that Congress won't get rid of.......
I noticed that it is very bipartisan, both the Democrats and the Republicans won't get rid of it.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-06-2007, 12:33 PM   #14
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Business Week published a followup article.

Apparently it was more of a publicity stunt than a sustainable engineering achievement or a business plan. Siemens didn't hestitate to talk trash: "The overhead electrical lines and a large part of the train's propulsion system 'can for all intents and purposes be junked' after a trip like Tuesday's, an engineer at the German train manufacturer Siemens claims."

Watch out for those crosswinds & narrow tunnels!
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-06-2007, 02:13 PM   #15
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Re: French train travels 357mph

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
Business Week published a followup article.

Apparently it was more of a publicity stunt than a sustainable engineering achievement or a business plan. Siemens didn't hestitate to talk trash: "The overhead electrical lines and a large part of the train's propulsion system 'can for all intents and purposes be junked' after a trip like Tuesday's, an engineer at the German train manufacturer Siemens claims."

Watch out for those crosswinds & narrow tunnels!
Sounds like sour grapes coming from the Germans...

How much do car makers put into those concept cars that will never see the light of day... all publicity stunts... but that publicity stunt might be the real deal in a decade or so..


PS... the Condord was a publicity stunt also... even its whole life of service..
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-06-2007, 11:06 PM   #16
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Re: French train travels 357mph

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Originally Posted by Texas Proud

PS... the Condord was a publicity stunt also... even its whole life of service..
Anybody ever get to ride one? That was one thing my fast lane lifestyle never got fast enough to do. I understand the whole thing was very cramped, though -- they weren't selling legroom in the Concorde.
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-07-2007, 05:39 AM   #17
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Re: French train travels 357mph

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Anybody ever get to ride one? That was one thing my fast lane lifestyle never got fast enough to do. I understand the whole thing was very cramped, though -- they weren't selling legroom in the Concorde.
No, they were selling SPEED.....

Quick story that shows how fast... Way back when.. I was watching Wimbeldon. John McEnroy was playing... the match just started. They then mentioned about him taking the Concord back to NY... that his parents were already ON a plane and he would BEAT them there.. so, he had to finish (win) the tournament, get dressed, get to the airport and STILL beat the other plane..

And how people can spend megas money... we were doing a deal with a French bank.. they took the Concord over in the morning to sign the papers and took it back that evening... I think it was $13K each way, or $20K more than business class.. I believe 5 people came over... but, they were the executives and maybe it was worth the $100K..
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Re: French train travels 357mph
Old 04-07-2007, 12:40 PM   #18
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Re: French train travels 357mph

I hope they didn't stick your bank with the bill! Yikes. Those were the good old days. Now they'd probably take their own Gulfstream V or something -- who knows, Concorde might have been a better deal in comparison.
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