A FORECAST OF FREIGHT TRANSPORT TECHNOLOGY TO THE YEAR 2000

Data are presented in graphical form which describe the past record of transport technology, and which can be used as a basis for projecting possible future improvements. Emphasis is placed on the growth in transport equipment size, speed, and power, since these factors can be more easily tracked to form a basis for projection. For purposes of comparison between various factors, the state of the art in 1950 is taken as an index of 100. A measure of the advance in railroad technology is presented in the record of average regular capacity; the average capacity was 52 tons in 1950 and 72.8 tons in 1974. The projection is about 85 freight tons by the year 2000. Advances in train speeds and engine power capacities are also discussed. In the field of highway carriers, there has been a growth in truck sizes and load carrying capacities but progress has been held to the highway limits set by government regulations. With regard to airlines, capacity is projected to continue to expand up to 500,000 pounds by the year 2000, but the speed will not advance above 600 mph. Technological advances in navigation and communication, reliable propulsion systems, DWT of tankers, and the growth in containership systems have led to advances in water transportation systems. The observation is made that to keep pace with the increased demand for the transport of goods, the available capital should be channeled into improving capacities of the respective modal rights of ways. The manner in which resources are allocated and the coordination of improvements are important. Government regulations should be encacted only after consideration of their cost/benefit relationships and their impact on the total transport system.

Media Info

  • Features: Figures;
  • Pagination: p. 491-516

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00134035
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 23 1976 12:00AM