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    JBN
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    Default Very Fast Train

    On a recent thread on submarines, there was a detour to Very Fast Trains and the wish that Australia had such a train.

    Last night (Friday 6 May) on SBS at 9:30pm, there was a fascinating article on one such train, its design and its operation - the Italian "Italo". Some briiliant engineering challenges, such as different apparatus to take electricity from standard lines as opposed to dedicated high speed lines. The immense crash absorption technology (Italians are good drivers, right?), the automated pressurisation when going through long tunnels at high speed. The intricate suspension with the bogies between carriages to prevent jack knifing. The one piece steel pressed wheels (a German VFT had one disintegrate at high speed with a number of people killed).

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    Undoubtedly terrific technology.

    The major question is the VFT a better alternative to Air Travel from a travelers point of view?

    And will there be enough bums on the seats to pay the huge cost of building?

    Or will it become a another Desalination plant fiasco?
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    As mentioned in the same context and at the same time, it's not just 'bums on seats'. It's also "tonnes on tracks".
    1000's of tonnes at time of freight travelling at 300km/h on rail between capital cities is a very much better proposition than 40 or 56 tonnes at a time travelling up the not so very permanent highway at 100km/h on rubber tyres, or a few hundred very expensive kilos of airfreight.
    Last edited by Kim Luck; 7th May 2016 at 10:56 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Or will it become a another Desalination plant fiasco?
    The desalination plant is not a fiasco. It delivers everything that was promised. It could be used right now to alleviate the drought in the western districts, but no-one wants to pay for that privilege and turn it on.
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post
    As mentioned in the same context and at the same time, it's not just 'bums on seats'. It's also "tonnes on tracks".
    1000's of tonnes at time of freight travelling at 300km/h on rail between capital cities is a very much better proposition than 40 or 56 tonnes at a time travelling up the not so very permanent highway at 100km/h on rubber tyres.
    The freight aspect is a valid point.

    However have we actually confirmed that the VFT will carry freight?

    Because if freight is part of brief and it's expected to replace road freight some pretty serious additional infrastructure will be required to load and unload the trains and some pretty special rolling/flying stock as well. Heavy freight won't be loaded at Passenger Facilities that's for sure.

    So far all I've heard is a heap of positives from a couple of politicians. And the fact money is cheap to borrow at the moment. And a three trip Sydney -Melbourne.

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    Perhaps you should spend a few hours dockside in Melbourne watching containerised and other cargo being loaded and unloaded from merchant ships in bulk. That's how I foresee the future of high speed rail freight. The road transport robber barons won't be happy and will continue to obstruct all efforts to change the status quo, but that's only been happening daily since WW2 in this country.
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    I think it's a load of crap, pure pork-barrelling.

    Passengers and baggage would by necessity have to be vetted similarly to pre flying, this would blow the time out to waste sufficient portion of a day that people would either elect to fly or drive.

    As pointed out, the logistics for using it to freight serious tonnage, again impact on its alleged benefits.

    And it's not about French cars. This is Toad Pond material.

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    Quote Originally Posted by addo View Post
    I think it's a load of crap, pure pork-barrelling.

    Passengers and baggage would by necessity have to be vetted similarly to pre flying, this would blow the time out to waste sufficient portion of a day that people would either elect to fly or drive.

    As pointed out, the logistics for using it to freight serious tonnage, again impact on its alleged benefits.

    And it's not about French cars. This is Toad Pond material.
    Perhaps I should point out that the French happen to hold the record for conventional wheeled high speed rail and have an enormous network of high speed rail everything. I've even travelled on them. High speed rail begins and ends in La Belle France.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post
    The desalination plant is not a fiasco. It delivers everything that was promised. It could be used right now to alleviate the drought in the western districts, but no-one wants to pay for that privilege and turn it on.
    Sure it does, the Polis just built something we don't need and we are never likely to need (Just ask the CC experts).

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    We should ask mods to float this thread in the pond.
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    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Sure it does, the Polis just built something we don't need and we are never likely to need (Just ask the CC experts).
    You are either tongue in cheek on that one or simply mis-informed.
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post
    Perhaps I should point out that the French happen to hold the record for conventional wheeled high speed rail and have an enormous network of high speed rail everything. I've even travelled on them. High speed rail begins and ends in La Belle France.
    Remind me, how this "interesting information" relates to Australia and Australian travel needs Australian freight requirements and Australian geographics .

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    Before this does get the flick into the pond, for those that are interested in VFT, if you haven't seen the doco on SBS, have a look at it. They have learned from the French and German versions and created some interesting engineering responses to various problems inherent in travelling by rail at 300kph. More so in that the Italians share track with conventional trains with conventional overhead power and then have to transform the VFT when it reaches stretches of high speed track and higher electricity transfer and greater friction. They also have some long tunnels on their high speed track.

    Watch the doco, you'll never see them here.

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    Default High speed BS

    Hi
    I have seen that doco twice now. Verrry interesting.
    However I think people are confusing a couple of things on here. There has been NO discussion about high speed freight rail AFAIK. There has been discussion about a dedicated freight line from north to south and going inland. A high speed passenger rail has also been proposed but seperate to that.

    What is this telling us !! The bl**dy pollies are incapable of taking a long term view in the national interest. Why do we vote them in and what's more why do we pay them ??? Shortly is your chance to make a difference !

    What we need is an integrated transport plan that caters for what we obviously(?) need but forever we will not get it. Too many special interests and gutless pollies. Look at how long it has taken to decide on the second Sydney airport and no train station were included initially ?????
    Enough Jaahn
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post
    You are either tongue in cheek on that one or simply mis-informed.
    OK, oracle, tell us why we are not drinking desalinated water at present. And why the plant for all intents and purposes is currently "turned off".

    Could the reason relate to the fact that there are currently plentiful sources of far cheaper suitable water and that situation is predicted to prevail for a long time ?

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    Not that this or many other "poissons rouge" you have introduced to the conversation has anything to do with the VFT, but we are STILL on water restrictions............
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post
    Not that this or many other "poissons rouge" you have introduced to the conversation has anything to do with the VFT, but we are STILL on water restrictions............
    Permanent water use rules were put in place as of 1 December 2012 since Stage 1 water restrictions were lifted. In March 2016 Target 155 was reintroduced as a reminder to make the best use of our precious water supplies.
    Permanent water use rules and water restrictions - Melbourne Water

    No, Kim water restrictions have been lifted in Melbourne.

    And yes, I do apologize for being off topic. But you should also for taking up he discussion with me.

    What really irks me is around 6 billion dollar infrastructure, sitting idle at a cost of lost interest of around $300 million annually.

    And with water reserves around 75% of maximum (-5% from last year) we aren't likely to need to turn it on any time soon.

    Which could be a good thing since it costs around $1.8m a day to operate.
    Last edited by robmac; 8th May 2016 at 01:28 PM. Reason: corrected figures

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    Guys, may I remind you that we already have a "fast train" the PTV "express" service from Ballarat to Melbourne is scintillating at 1Hr 19Min to cover approx. 110km.

    If you were in France, Italy, Germany, Japan, China, the same trip would take less than 30 minutes, Stn to Stn.

    We will never build any sort of VFT, or even a FT in Australia. political strategies only look to the next election, vested interests will lobby against it, and we probably don't have the population base to amertise the cost and provide revenue. The Snowy Mountains scheme would never be built with our current short term thinking. Live the dream guys because that is all it will ever be.
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    We'd be importing electricity from China.

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    As Whippet says, we do not have the population base to support (amortise) the incredible build and operation expense of a VFT. There are those who expect that because the line goes near a town the train will slow down and stop. Surprise - it won't! The service needs to be rapid and reliable. I reckon a SYD>MEL service would be lucky to even stop in Albury and dependent on the route maybe Canberra.
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    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    OK, oracle, tell us why we are not drinking desalinated water at present. And why the plant for all intents and purposes is currently "turned off".
    ?
    It's an insurance policy against potential catastrophe, Old Chap! And we are not currently suffering that catastrophe!
    If the water supply literally runs out some day, the trickle exiting your faucet, and sourced in the DeSal, will suddenly be most welcome, and "worth it"

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    Quote Originally Posted by R16mania View Post
    It's an insurance policy against potential catastrophe, Old Chap! And we are not currently suffering that catastrophe!
    If the water supply literally runs out some day, the trickle exiting your faucet, and sourced in the DeSal, will suddenly be most welcome, and "worth it"
    However, it's very expensive infrastructure to cover the "water supply literally runs out some day" scenario.

    I'd suggest the statistical odds to that are extremely low.

    Perhaps the cost could have been more gainfully spent in other areas ?
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    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    Permanent water use rules and water restrictions - Melbourne Water

    No, Kim water restrictions have been lifted in Melbourne.

    And yes, I do apologize for being off topic. But you should also for taking up he discussion with me.

    What really irks me is around 6 billion dollar infrastructure, sitting idle at a cost of lost interest of around $300 million annually.

    And with water reserves around 75% of maximum (-5% from last year) we aren't likely to need to turn it on any time soon.

    Which could be a good thing since it costs around $1.8m a day to operate.
    From melbourne water itself: "Permanent water use rules were put in place as of 1 December 2012 since Stage 1 water restrictions were lifted. In March 2016 Target 155 was reintroduced as a reminder to make the best use of our precious water supplies."

    Might intimate some restrictions?

    Melbourne's water storages have been as low as 25% in recent years. Considering our last dam was completed in 1986 (I think) and our population has been swelling at the highest rate of any Australian capital city, at the time it was commenced the future looked bleak tap-wise. The cost of a new dam would have been enormous and political suicide for any party, so desal was the only option. No one will complain if the plant saves our bacon at a later date. P.S: What, if anything would you have spent the money on?
    Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone............

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    Quote Originally Posted by robmac View Post
    However, it's very expensive infrastructure to cover the "water supply literally runs out some day" scenario.

    I'd suggest the statistical odds to that are extremely low.

    Perhaps the cost could have been more gainfully spent in other areas ?

    Water supply not increasing and no plan in that regard. Population drinking it increasing with no plan to limit that. Reservoirs at record lows across the planet (eg Venezuela, Tasmania, California, India). My erudite assessment, and acknowledging the intrinsic inspecificity of the adjectives involved, is that the statistical odds are "very" low, but falling short of "extremely".

    The consequences of a megalopolis running out of drinking water are utterly catastrophic, so the payoff for having a plan to provide minimal, but survival, water supply, in that event, is enormous.

    So you have a "very" low probability of vast payoff. Expected value is at least credibly above the financial cost of the DeSal. You strike me as a Man with a rational brain, so I am sure you can appreciate the arithmetic of that assertion! Yes, it is one jolly big guess, but if the reservoirs are empty, and you have 4 million thirsty, whining blighters, well, you just don't want to go there! If that happens, better peel off the "I didn't vote for DeSal" sticker off the Stavic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kim Luck View Post

    Melbourne's water storages have been as low as 25% in recent years. Considering our last dam was completed in 1986 (I think) and our population has been swelling at the highest rate of any Australian capital city, at the time it was commenced the future looked bleak tap-wise.
    Gosh, Old Boy, turns out we are like two peas in a pod! I always felt like I have a lost brother!

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