Rail

Old Dominion U., Mass. Co. to test Maglev

Posted on January 11, 2010

Old Dominion University and its research team in magnetic levitation (Maglev) has been working with a Massachusetts company that specializes in Maglev technology and is preparing to do prototype testing on an innovative Maglev system on the elevated guideway located on campus.

MagneMotion Inc. (MMI), a company founded by Richard D. Thornton, emeritus professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, received a $7.9-million grant in 2008 from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to conduct a three-phase test of its patented Maglev technology. ODU researchers have been an integral part of the MMI team on this effort.

To prepare for the testing, contractors are removing from the guideway the original AMT vehicle, which has been idle since ODU engineers built a different vehicle based on their research, as well as taking down an incomplete stairway near Webb University Center over the holiday break.

The 18-month, first phase of the testing is almost complete, involving research largely done at MMI's facilities in Acton, Mass. It involved the testing of a prototype on a 160-foot test track at the company headquarters.

Once the FTA signs off on phase one, MMI will bring a Maglev test vehicle to Norfolk to conduct tests along 500 feet of specially retrofitted track on the ODU guideway. That FTA approval is expected early in 2010.

Approximately $700,000 of the $7.9 million MMI grant, earned in a competitive bid contest through the FTA, is pledged to researchers at ODU.

ODU is working to develop an energy-efficient Maglev train that would operate at slower speeds in an urban setting. The only commercial Maglev in the world is a high-speed train built in China for several billion dollars.

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

San Diego debuts restored trolley for Silver Line

The 68-year old streetcar was acquired as part of a trade with United Transportation Corporation (UTC)/Rail Air Sources (RAS) in exchange for two Siemens U-2 light rail vehicles that were phased out of the MTS fleet.

34 properties purchased for $70M along Honolulu rail transit route

HART's property acquisitions range in price from $22,304 to about $6 million. In June, HART said that it has to acquire 213 properties for the project, and that it had an acquisition budget of $222 million.

Alstom opens new Brazilian Citadis production line

The new production facility will serve the Brazilian market and, in a near future, the Latin America region where a number of new tramway projects are emerging. When fully operational, the facility will employ around 150 people.

FRA ramps up campaign to address nationwide grade crossing safety

The first phase of the effort calls upon local law enforcement agencies to show a greater presence at grade crossings, issue citations to drivers that violate rules of the road at crossings and consider rapid implementation of best practices for grade crossing safety.

S.C. city seeking elevated transit line bids

The first phase of the plan would construct a four-mile section elevated guideway above a section of abandoned railroad tracks. The first section of the elevated railway could connect Clemson University's International Center for Automotive Research campus with downtown Greenville.

See More News

Post a Comment

Post Comment

Comments (0)

Please sign in or register to .    Close