Non-Stop Bullet Train Concept

(YouTube Link)

A virtual high-five goes out to the engineer(s) that came up with this idea. As wonderfully fast as the bullet train is, all that stopping and starting takes time, which adds up. "A mere 5 min stop per station (elderly passengers cannot be hurried) will result in a total loss of 5 min x 30 stations or 2.5 hours of train journey time!"

More info.   |  via kottke

This probably is the video you saw a while ago. It's a very interesting concept but I only "get it" if somehow you are able to come down into the train below as you travel or go up to the small one on top as you near the station at which you want to get off. Otherwise I don't understand what you do if you want to keep going.
Also I don't see whiplash being a problem as I'm sure the small wagons on top have their own break system and they work on inertia and not by latching on to the train abruptly
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
considering there are a lot of suicides by jumping in front of trains. I can only imagine what it'd be like with a train like that around! lots of flying or smashed bodies around. i wonder if they'll have a cleaning crew around?
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
as my girlfriend pointed out: what happens if EVERYONE wants to get out at the same stop, e.g. at a convention center... i think we have a bug here!
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
This isn't designed to replace every stop on the line, but to allow local services on an end-to-end line. The vast majority of passengers on that train are going from Big City A to Big City B. The little shuttle is for people getting on and off at small towns along the way. People traveling for those local destinations board the big train on the carriages that end up underneath the shuttle car in order to board it.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Nice idea but the safety mechanism in place to prevent someone getting cut in half would be diabolical, either that or there is a inter-locked lift! Still good concept.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
I thought of this idea years ago when I was 15 years old or so. I thought it was a great idea then and still think so. It might actually make long distance high speed trains in the U.S. a viable option.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Why not have the shuttle train horizontally separated and not vertically separated. Just have a normal self powered electric carriage on a station siding, load with passengers and time it's departure to synch with the large train and link up, unload its passengers to the fast train, then load departing train passengers, uncouple, quickly move to a siding, and and slow to arrive at the next station. No fancy elevation, just extra sidings for stopping and starting the shuttle car.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Dangerous, and requires a complete new infrastructure. Not to mention tunnels and bridges which will need complete rebuilding. Plus all that metal and people up high make the whole thing less stable. Ice and rain will make the mechanism unworkable. Here is a better idea.
Its a train right? There are separate cars. Power each car with its own motor which does not need to be as powerful as the main bullet train motor. (you will see why in a moment.) As the train moves into the station, the last car in the train drops off, and rolls to a stop, and the passengers depart. Then the empty car can be sent to the end of the line at its own speed. The main train continues on to its final destination without any delays. That takes care of drop offs. Pickups of passengers would be just as easy...the loaded car would be brought up to speed by catapult (like a carnival ride) and would be picked up by the next train coming down that track either by docking in front (risky) or by linking up behind (requires a siding)
The picking up of passengers would be a little riskier, but a reasonably competent engineering body can make it safe, and like all trains, it would be very fuel efficient.

Of course, if the run was a fairly short one, say, under a thousand kilometers, then what is the fuss about an extra couple of five minute stops?
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Actually, the Japanese shinkansen system long ago provided the solution. Three different speeds of trains. Super expresses that stop only in the main cities, medium speed trains that stop at moderate intervals, and locals that stop at every station. All the schedules coordinate so there is not much more than 5 or 10 minutes or so to wait between different train classes if they both stop at the same station, and usually switching from one to another only requires walking to the other side of the same platform.

If you travel shinkansen by the slower trains, you will often find yourself waiting at the side platform of the local stations a minute or so longer, while the faster train overtakes you without stopping. The local then takes the "slot" behind that train on the same track.

It all works beautifully.

In practice you take the fastest train for the bulk of your journey, then hop over to a medium or local for the last portion, if you are going somewhere more out of the way.

Play around with some destinations here, and you will see how it works. Eg, Tokyo- Maibara (one stop before Kyoto)

Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Or do like Brazil and collect all the fares for trolleys while on the platform and have a bunch of doors open so everyone boards and exits at the same time.
In this concept, obviously people have to get out of the upper pod to continue and enter it to exit and the station track would have to be much longer to skip the losses speeding up and slowing down.
Abusive comment hidden. (Show it anyway.)
Login to comment.
Click here to access all of this post's 22 comments

Email This Post to a Friend
"Non-Stop Bullet Train Concept"

Separate multiple emails with a comma. Limit 5.


Success! Your email has been sent!

close window

This website uses cookies.

This website uses cookies to improve user experience. By using this website you consent to all cookies in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

I agree
Learn More