Blueprint For a New American Industry

Last: Introduction

Blueprint For a New American Industry

Development of a US monorail manufacturing industry can, for the first time in American industrial history, be implemented without the decades of research and development, misuse of resources, redundant and counter productive competition, financial uncertainties and environmental impacts that have characterized the evolution of virtually every industry and manufacturing process throughout the twentieth century. A new American monorail industry can be modeled after the United States’ aerospace, commercial aircraft, computer, medical and information technology industries, which set world standards in every aspect of their operation, development and service, while providing millions of the most stable, highest paying professional and manufacturing jobs in the US economy. Harnessing and refining the international monorail industry at the height of its efficiency and technological development, and adapting monorail systems to 21st century American transportation needs and opportunities would permit an entirely new industry to be developed without the years of trial and error, environmental impacts and premature obsolescence that have characterized so many historic American industries.

Building on the design, testing and manufacturing base that Bombardier, of Millhaven, Ontario has established as the dynamic center of monorail production in North America, the proven, state of the art monorail systems in development and world wide operation can contribute easily adaptable manufacturing, construction and operational processes to an unencumbered and nearly unlimited new field of transportation throughout the United States. In addition to Bombardier’s long-established, remarkably reliable and efficient monorail systems operating in Las Vegas, Nevada and Disneyworld, Florida, the Canadian manufacturer is producing 54 seven-car monorail trains for a 24 km extension of Sao Paulo’s Green Line monorail system; One of three planned monorail systems extending 75 km throughout the Brazilian city. Bombardier is completing plans and contracts for development of a 3.6 km monorail in the financial district of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, featuring six, two-car driverless, Innovia 300 trains, which are capable of transporting between 3,000 and 50,000 passengers per hour, per direction, at up to 80 miles per hour, depending on train model, design and configuration. The ever-expanding development of monorail systems in a wide variety of settings and regions of the world is further enhanced by research and development of more technologically sophisticated and environmentally compatible vehicles that are increasingly distinguishing monorails from all other forms of transportation.

After completing one of the World’s most modern and efficient monorail systems in Malaysia’s capital city of Kuala Lumpur, Scomi Corporation has projected its monorail manufacturing and system building to Mumbai, India, where a 60-car, 15-train system is well under way to completion in 2011. The Kuala Lumpur urban monorail system has performed at greater than 99% reliability in transporting over 100,000,000 passengers safely throughout the city since 2004. Scomi has recently been awarded a contract to supply 12 four-car trains to the system, significantly expanding the capacity of the 2-car trains of the original system; while Hitachi Corporation is building on a 45-year foundation of safe, reliable and profitable Japanese monorail service in developing an urban monorail system in Daegu, South Korea. This proven reliable technology and superlative performance continues the decades of worldwide monorail services that have transported over two billion riders without a single passenger fatality.

Already producing the most environmentally compatible form of transportation available, with the lightest carbon footprint in every aspect of production, development and operation, monorail engineering has been refined to the point that Metrail, AG Switzerland, a division of Frazer-Nash, UK produces monorails that generate all electrical power required for full operation on board the monorail vehicles. Application of compact fuel cell technology such as that developed by Bloom Energy, of Sunnyvale, California, to Metrail’s self-propelled monorail vehicles could produce a virtually independent, self-sustaining mass transportation system capability that has been limited to the realm of science fiction for the past century. The significance of this independent propulsion and operational capability cannot be over stated, and further illustrates the nearly unlimited potential and opportunities monorails present to American cities, extended urban areas, transportation environments and the US economy.

Next: Green Solutions to Transportation Challenges

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