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Old 11-22-2019, 09:04 AM   #31 (permalink)
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That's why you physically connect the cars and then run them at full speed limit in the left or middle lanes. They can break off or add more but other cars maneuver around them. 20 cars and a tug would be about 360 feet which would be similar to 2 or 3 semis traveling together.

Getting twice the range on an electric car is good, but using none of it for a little bit of diesel is even better.

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Old 11-22-2019, 12:56 PM   #32 (permalink)
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That's why you physically connect the cars and then run them at full speed limit in the left or middle lanes. They can break off or add more but other cars maneuver around them. 20 cars and a tug would be about 360 feet which would be similar to 2 or 3 semis traveling together.

Getting twice the range on an electric car is good, but using none of it for a little bit of diesel is even better.
When you physically connect the vehicles they legally become one vehicle that exceeds legal length limits.

Given the fact that trying to get the NHTSA to update headlight and mirror requirements has been a decades of banging oneís head against a brick wall Iím not hopeful for a change to length limits.
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Old 11-22-2019, 01:02 PM   #33 (permalink)
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That's why you physically connect the cars and then run them at full speed limit in the left or middle lanes. They can break off or add more but other cars maneuver around them. 20 cars and a tug would be about 360 feet which would be similar to 2 or 3 semis traveling together.

Getting twice the range on an electric car is good, but using none of it for a little bit of diesel is even better.
Still not sold on the connection part, but having them travel fast in the left lane seems like an easier problem to solve than my dumb idea. Not contending with trucks for on/off ramp exchanges would reduce a lot of accidents and smooth the merging process.

It wouldn't matter that the trucks are traveling fast from an efficiency perspective because the aero benefits would largely offset that, plus having faster turnaround is efficient and would reduce shipping costs.
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Old 11-22-2019, 01:07 PM   #34 (permalink)
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How about only using semis to and from the train depot?
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Old 11-22-2019, 02:33 PM   #35 (permalink)
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When you physically connect the vehicles they legally become one vehicle that exceeds legal length limits.

Given the fact that trying to get the NHTSA to update headlight and mirror requirements has been a decades of banging one’s head against a brick wall I’m not hopeful for a change to length limits.
It would require clarification but from what I read on the Interstate highway system at least, there is no overall length limit. With 20 cars and a tug you would be over the weight limit which makes less sense as it is carried by at least 84 tires over a large area. Scaling down the trains to 12 cars and a tug should be under 80,000 pounds and the overall length would be more manageable. The economy would suffer though.
https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/sw/overview/index.htm
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Old 11-22-2019, 04:37 PM   #36 (permalink)
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It would require clarification but from what I read on the Interstate highway system at least, there is no overall length limit. With 20 cars and a tug you would be over the weight limit which makes less sense as it is carried by at least 84 tires over a large area. Scaling down the trains to 12 cars and a tug should be under 80,000 pounds and the overall length would be more manageable. The economy would suffer though.
https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/freight/sw/overview/index.htm
All states allow double trailers, 13 allow triple trailers. Zero States allow more than 3 trailers behind the tow vehicles. For triples some states limit the overall length to 105 ft

I believe all states allow for 3 trucks to be decked behind the mule but I’m not positive
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Old 11-22-2019, 04:52 PM   #37 (permalink)
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So it's a states thing not an NHTSA thing.
I think states could and would move faster on such a thing. Just like autonomous driving, and this would certainly require autonomous driving as well.
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Old 11-22-2019, 06:30 PM   #38 (permalink)
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That's why you physically connect the cars and then run them at full speed limit in the left or middle lanes. They can break off or add more but other cars maneuver around them. 20 cars and a tug would be about 360 feet which would be similar to 2 or 3 semis traveling together.

Getting twice the range on an electric car is good, but using none of it for a little bit of diesel is even better.
HEY i have a better idea Why not build tracks and just have them drive on the tracks instead of having 18wheelers on the road to begin with.

problem solved sure you will be able to to have them physically able to connect multiple of them you can have 3-5 engines pulling 1-2 miles worth of trailers..


you can have it powered by overhead electrical lines as well
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Old 11-23-2019, 03:24 PM   #39 (permalink)
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it's based off the CX3 mazda quick edit in ms paint
it's obviously a slightly face lifted version of it

Ford divested from Mazda between 2008 and 2010. They no longer share technology or platforms. Mazda is tied up with Toyota at the moment.
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Old 11-25-2019, 12:54 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Off topic a bit but here is my idea. Build electric cars with a sturdy front and rear steel plate of specific size shape and height. Then the cars could chain together on the highway using electromagnets to attach each car front and rear to the next. Also use the automation and let them talk to each other about intention, what exit they want, overall destination, emergency braking, etc. You could even add "freeway tugs" basically a big diesel tow rig that could pull a whole chain of maybe 20 or more cars and let the electric cars use zero battery until they were at their exit point.

Just for instance a drive I make a few times a year Spokane WA to Seattle. There must be thousands of cars every hour doing the almost exact same drive. Pod them up into 20 car groups every 2 mins pulled by a tug that gets 10 mpg. 275 miles so 27.5 gallons of diesel or 1.38 gallons for each car to go 275 miles (200 mpg), but they arrive in Seattle or Spokane with a full battery remaining. The pollution out on the windy plains of Washington has far less impact than in the metro areas and then people would be less apprehensive of electric cars and limited ranges or recharge locations and time.
I've thought of this same idea myself. In addition, you could have a positive and negative side on the front and rear connections of each car. That way, a current could be provided by the tug to charge the cars why they are being towed, or the cars in the chain could share electricity as needed. But all this would require a high level automation or AI to make this work. I wouldn't trust the average driver, to connect and disconnect from a road train...

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