System Management of any technology is constrained by the environment that the technology must operate within. For instance, a modern passenger airliner is able to be operated automatically, on “auto-pilot” even at tremendous speeds, because it operates miles from the earth and miles from any other aircraft. Even an airliner does not operate on auto pilot while taxiing within the airport environment at relatively much slower speeds.
Although automation of mass transit is a good development and does improve safety, no automation system is capable of safely operating in a surface system that is subject to encroachment by other non-automatic vehicles or by pedestrians. The state of the art of “Artificial Intelligence” still requires human oversight in these uncontrolled conditions.
Elevated monorails and other grade separated systems can operate safely at much greater levels of automation. The newest monorail systems incorporate redundant safety devices that essentially eliminate the possibility of accidents such as derailments and collisions. Even these redundant safety systems do not eliminate the need for some level of human oversight and monitoring of the entire system related to the complexity of the operating environment.
The inherent safety of modern straddle beam technology in use over the last fifty years and carrying up to two billion people has resulted in a safety record of no passenger fatalities and an on-time performance record that people often set their watches by. No other technology or system management program has achieved this goal and none can surpass these results.
Development and application of monorail technology to new transportation systems would implement the most modern, efficient and robust transportation service available anywhere in the world. Satellite communication-based system controls, with redundant, self-correcting safety and operational equipment place monorail systems at the cutting edge in management and operational systems technology.
Combined with low maintenance, highly efficient vehicles and operating equipment, monorail systems should prove to be the most effectively and efficiently managed of any ground transportation mode. While all other types of transportation are constrained by their basic design and longstanding limitations, the new, state of the art engineering and technology of monorails offer nearly unlimited capabilities to the operation and management of monorail systems.