A train that’s ahead by a nose !

ALPHA-X_Train__   Shanghai_Maglev_Train__

ALPHA-X                                                                        Maglev

Trains are accepted to be less polluting than aircraft but to truly rival plane travel as a valid alternative they are being developed to go faster. In Japan they are testing the ALPHA-X which stands for Advanced Labs for Frontline Activity in rail eXperimentation. It will be capable of speeds up to 250 mph (402km/h) – 50 mph faster than the current generation of Skinkansen trains. However the fastest in the world is the Shanghai’s Maglev train, which employs a non traditional train technology whereby the train is raised or levitated above a track by magnetism.

For the ALPHA-X to achieve 250 mph engineers have had to modify the ‘kingfisher’ inspired nose cone: namely to make it even longer. Night time trials are being undertaken presently with 16m & 22m length cones. The cone is used to combat the ‘piston effect’ when traveling through tunnels, which can cause an unwanted sonic boom at the other end, which has been known to smash windows ! It is also designed to reduce drag and effect of side winds.

Please see link below to YouTube video of ALPHA-X in action !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKNN-19ysJU

Hope you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“If you can dream it, you can do it.”

Walt Disney

“The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.”

Michelangelo

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

 

 

About Mike Osborn CEng

A Chartered Engineer and member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers living in the UK with a passion for engineering design, technology and innovation, peppered with a little humour. Presently running a small engineering design & CAD drawing solutions business, serving mainly London and home counties. www.osborndesign.co.uk
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