Let’s be honest here, we all love trains. We all love to travel within our comfort zone and arriving straight to the heart of the city rather than the faraway airport. Did you know well-established high-speed rail systems operate in a more environmentally friendly way than any other means of transport? Cool isn’t it, so today we will answer some of the basic questions about trains you may have?
1. Which train was the first to carry passengers?
Stephenson’s Locomotion was the first train engine to be used on a public railway. the Stockton and Darling ton, in 1825. Stephenson’s Rocket won € 500 in competition at Rainhill, Liverpool, four years later.
“Locomotion” pulled a train 122 meters long which comprised the tender, five coal wagons, one wagon of flour, “Experiment” (a specially-built passenger car for the railway directors which looked just like a stagecoach), 6 coal wagons full of guests, 14 wagons full of workmen and 6 wagons of coal.
2. How does steam power work?
A steam engine is like a big kettle. It uses the pressure of steam to push against pistons inside cylinders. The pistons move sliding rods called linkages, which turn the wheels and make the train move.
A steam engine is a heat engine that performs mechanical work using steam as its working fluid. The steam engine uses the force produced by steam pressure to push a piston back and forth inside a cylinder. This pushing force is transformed, by a connecting rod and flywheel, into rotational force for work.
3. Which diesel was ‘centipede’?
America’s Pennsylvania Railroad used Baldwin diesel engines in pairs. Each one had 12 small wheels on each side. Linked together, making a 6,000 horse-power monster, they looked like they had 24 legs.
The Baldwin DR-12-8-1500/2 was the Baldwin Locomotive Works’ first serious attempt at a production road diesel locomotive. The Baldwin type designation was ‘DR-12-8-1500/2,’ meaning Diesel Road locomotive, with 12 axles, and two engines of 1,500 horsepower each.
4. Why did diesel take over from steam?
Diesel power first came into use to cope with the problem of smoke in cities and underground railways. During World War Two, military diesel engines became lighter and smaller. Just like today’s trains, the engines fitted under the floors of carriages.
5. Which diesel looked like an airplane?
The German Kruckenberg of 1931 had a huge propeller at the back which pushed it along like an aeroplane on rails. It reached speeds up to 230 kph during a 10-kilometre speed trial. Unfortunately, it was too noisy and dangerous for everyday use.
In 1929, a German aircraft engineer decided to add an aeroplane engine to a train to create something that resembles the cradle of a Zeppelin airship on rails.
Franz had spent years designing Zeppelin airships prior to dreaming of the possibility of flying on rails.
Franz put his experience into practice and designed his bullet-shaped train with a difference. When it was finally built in 1930, the Schienenzeppelin was propelled using a propeller at the rear.
6. Which country went electric first?
France was the first country to use electric trains on a major mainline route, making the whole of the Paris to Orleans route electric in 1900. French electric trains have broken many records. This 1981 train was able to travel as fast as 380 kph, which was a record at the time.
7. What’s a pantograph?
A pantograph is the metal connector that reaches from the roof of an electric engine to the live wire overhead – just like the pole at the back of a fairground bumper car.
8. Are electric engines better than diesel?
Electric power lets trains use energy without creating too much mess. The only pollution is at the power station where the electricity is made. Electric power is ideal for trams and underground trains in cities. Diesel are better on long router where great lengths of electricity would be expensive.
9. Is the Channel Tunnel longest?
Not quite. The Channel Tunnel is 49.8 km in total. The Seikan, Japan’s tunnel between the main islands of Honshu and Hokkaido, travels an amazing 53.9 kilometres underground.
10. Which train travels farthest?
The once-daily service between Moscow and Vladivostock in Russia travels 9350 kilometres taking eight days. Known as the Trans-Siberian Express, or Russia, the trains have featured in several books and films.
Also, Check out our previous article about space.