Question by Serverine: What are the ramifications of running electric bullet trains along existing power line structures in the US?
Answer by Curious George
The only existing power structures that trains can use are in the “North East Corridor” (DC to NY). We already have our own US version of bullet trains operating under these power lines that goes by the name of “Acela” and Amtrak operates it.
Granted the Acela is no where near the speed of a foreign bullet train. Top speed for our trains is 150mph, but they rarely actually travel that fast. To further High Speed Rail in this country would involve adding more infrastructure. Either by building new roadbed and power systems, or updating current trackage in certain areas to handle high speeds and adding the power systems to those.
America isnt really sold on train travel like it used to be before the 1960s. So there isnt much interest in HSR. The idea of the heavy amount of work to be done to bring HSR, not to mention the cost (same as bailing out a car manufacturer) is still prohibitive as plane travel already has this part of the market cornered for the next forseeable future (25-50 years).
As far as any ramifications, just the building of an HSR would be the only bad things. The operation of such, would certainly make its worth, justifiable. Still, its apparent the US would rather buy new cars and plug major oil spills than to enter into things like fusion power generation and green high speed trains.
In essence, the only ramification of this is truely, the american public. When are we gonna get off our collective kiesters and just get the job done!
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