[LINK] eHighways & electric planes

David Lochrin dlochrin at key.net.au
Fri Jun 24 13:02:43 AEST 2016

On 2016-06-24 10:13 Tom Worthington wrote:

> Long distance freight can be efficiently transported by rail, then moved to a truck at an "intermodal" terminal for local delivery.

Hear, hear!

> Battery technology has reached the point where it would be feasible to use electric buses, without the need for overhead wires.

I don't think battery technology is anywhere near that point.  The Transport for NSW specification (2012) states the "daily operating duration" for all except school busses is "18 hours per day or up to 450 km per shift.  Buses must be capable of achieving this without the need to refuel."

> To get this discussion on-topic for Link, I suggest IT can be used to make "public" transport more usable and environmentally benign. As an example, an Uber-like social transport planner could combine the features of taxis and buses. With this you would indicate where you would like to go, when and how flexible you are as to time and cost. You would then be offered the usual options of a dedicated car with driver (expensive and quicker) or an ordinary bus (slow but cheap). But there could also be options in-between: a car with driver shared with three people in your social group, or a mini-bus with six people who you don't know, but the system vouches for. The more willing you are to travel with strangers, the cheaper, and sooner, would be the ride.

Maybe...  The economics of maintaining a stock of large buses, mini-buses, cars, etc., and having them available (using human drivers!) with reasonable response times all over a city like Sydney seems to me very unlikely to be practicable.

David L.

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