'The Energy Crunch' has suddenly become a widely used and fashionable term. There are various predictions as to when our existing reserves will run out but what is rarely questioned is that energy will be more expensive in the future than it is today, always assuming that it is still available, and therefore there will be the greatest need to use it in the most efficient way. Rail transport is by far the most efficient means of moving people and goods overland. Road transport is appreciably less efficient while air transport lags far behind again. The actual figures to move one ton-mile of freight are in the ratio of 1:4:60, according to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the USA. In theory transport by water is slightly more efficient than rail but obviously for inland movements it can only be used in very particular circumstances. In all forms of transport, however, the actual figures for energy consumption can vary over a very wide band-width depending on many factors-some controllable by the operator, others not. First of all the ways in which energy is used by a railway are examined. There are three main categories, namely: to accelerate the train from rest; to overcome resistance to motion (tractive resistance) when it is moving; and to supply auxiliary services.

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    Ian Allan Limited

    Terminal House
    Shepperton, Middlesex  England  TW17 8AS
  • Publication Date: 0

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00051927
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Modern Railroads
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Apr 26 1974 12:00AM