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High Speed Trains

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High Speed Trains

Postby Kay » Sat 21 Mar 2015 07:05 GMT

Here's an interesting article about high speed trains, including a new project in Japan to develop a train which can travel at 500 km/h (310 mph). It's hardly a "transporter beam", but it's a step in the right direction for those who'd rather spend less time on getting there.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-31608679
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Re: High Speed Trains

Postby Dave » Sat 21 Mar 2015 07:30 GMT

I've wished for a long time that the UK had more high-speed railways, and feel it vaguely embarrassing that we don't. But it's an inevitable consequence of living on a crowded island (in most of the bits south and east of Lancashire, anyway) and governments taking a relatively restrained approach to compulsory purchase. France and China may have many more high-speed lines, but France is quite sparsely populated and China has an authoritarian government.

So we continue to send our trains along lines mostly designed in the Victorian era for speeds below 100 mph. (Initially even the 125s rarely reached that speed on many of the lines they travel along, though some of the lines have been upgraded since.)
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Re: High Speed Trains

Postby Graeme » Sat 21 Mar 2015 16:33 GMT

A concern I have regarding these high speed trains is that they are incredibly vulnerable to terrorist attack or to natural disasters. When you combine the mass with the speed you have something that can't stop carrying a large number of people that can easily turn into a missile. If a bridge is out or something finds its way onto the track it could be disastrous (of course this is from someone who likes to ride their motorbike at 200kmh+ :D ).
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Re: High Speed Trains

Postby Kay » Sat 21 Mar 2015 21:52 GMT

Good point, Graeme. And if they had to increase security to the extent they do for air travel, the time checking in and going through all the security procedures would negate the benefits of a quicker journey.
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