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Thread: Gas Turbine Powered Bus

  1. #1
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    Gas Turbine Powered Bus

    Just saw this and felt like you might be interested.

    NYC has just begun testing a new bus. It has an all electric power train, with a small gas turbine powered generator supplying the charge along with regenerative braking. Seems like a similar system to the Volt.

    An advantage is that because of how efficiently the turbine runs, the exhaust is cleaner than a standard diesel bus without the need for any exhaust gas treatment.

    Very cool.

    M.T.A. Tests Sleeker Bus With Turbine Engine - City Room Blog - NYTimes.com

    [ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DesignLine_International]DesignLine International - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]

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  2. #2
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    Cool concept.

    But honestly, does the MTA feel like this is a necessity when you have subway tunnels collapsing?

    Facade Collapse Disrupts Service on No. 1 Line - City Room Blog - NYTimes.com

    They're lucky they didn't have a train pass underneath it, or they'd have a shitstorm right now.

    And most of these buses (if not all of them) are in Manhattan, you know, where all the rich people are? No surprise to me.

    Sigh.

    *Thanks cmcpokey for making this thread so that I can vent*

    *rant over*



    And yes, I am a frequent user of the MTA and I am very unsatisfied with their service.

  3. #3
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    Wow. Nice improvement from diesel engines. It's kinda amazing, specially when you compare that bus to what we have here in the philippines. Yours is somewhat lightyears ahead compared to what we have here. Almost all of the buses here still us diesel engines, i think only about 3 buses in the country are running on CNG, or using hybrid technology. Now, most (if not all) of the buses here have no catalytic converters or anythings to filter out harmful gases in the exhaust. Some of the buses here (especially the ones with no air-conditioning) just basically have a bent hollow pipe for exhaust. So yeah, i think it will be a very long wait for us until we can have that sort of technology in our buses.

    Here are some examples of what we have here:





    Last edited by Black Edition; 08-28-2009 at 06:09 AM. Reason: ...
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  4. #4
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    interesting concept I guess, I wonder how's the noise issue on this thing. we have a turbine Rover engine in our school's engine lab, and this was a tiny turbine made for cars, and it is LOUD.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by RacingManiac View Post
    interesting concept I guess, I wonder how's the noise issue on this thing. we have a turbine Rover engine in our school's engine lab, and this was a tiny turbine made for cars, and it is LOUD.
    that was my question as well... but they can be baffled to be not so loud. and if works the way i imagine, it doesn't run constantly either.
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  6. #6
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    I would be interested to see more on the diesel vs turbine comparisons. On pure efficiency alone generally piston diesels do quite nicely against diesel fueled small turbines. However, the difference in engine maintenance requirements is a very significant point. For the MTA what ultimately maters is cost of ownership. If a diesel engine uses less fuel but cost more to service then the total cost difference may be a wash.
    The electric drive part is nice as it effectively addresses one of the reasons gas turbines have never made it in production vehicles. Throttle response, high idle/low throttle fuel consumption and generally poor dynamic response of turbines is a non-issue when the electric motor is doing all the wheel driving work. Electric motors are just about ideal for that job. Gas turbines would also make for a nice start-stop generator system. Unlike a diesel they can start smoothly via a electric motor that simply revs them up. No starting or stopping shudder.
    In the end it will be an interesting concept. I wonder how it cost compares with things like GM's dual mode hybrid buses. Ultimately these things should come down to price vs performance... then again the MTA's history suggests they aren't always interested in delivering the most of the dollar...

  7. #7
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    That is definetly some interesting technology. We have hybrids in our city, New Flyer's to be exact. New Flyer's are manufactured in Manitoba, for your information.
    I hope this isn't too much to ask but, you guys don't mind putting up the some regular Diesel bus engines and Turbine engines. I'd do it myself, but cmcpokey gets... lets just say upset about how I put up pictures.
    Some of those bus's look like dang bugs.
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  8. #8
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    according to the wiki article, it doubles the fuel mileage of a conventional bus, along with having far fewer mechanical systems to maintain. so it could rather reduce maintenance costs.
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    I just realized how ritzy glitzy that Subway looked.
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    Could we finally be taking public transportation seriously in the US?...hmmm...

    I still think it's ridiculous that I live 45 minutes from a city and I have to drive 20 minutes to catch the nearest train...wtf!!
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by switters78 View Post
    Could we finally be taking public transportation seriously in the US?...hmmm...

    I still think it's ridiculous that I live 45 minutes from a city and I have to drive 20 minutes to catch the nearest train...wtf!!
    Yes, we are talking about public transit in New York, one of the few US cities that really works with public transit. Thanks to sprawl (both in location of homes and places of work) public transit doesn't work well (read cost effective) in most parts of the US.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by culver View Post
    Yes, we are talking about public transit in New York, one of the few US cities that really works with public transit. Thanks to sprawl (both in location of homes and places of work) public transit doesn't work well (read cost effective) in most parts of the US.
    Toronto is the same thing with traffic, according to my uncle. So many taxi's and bus's, so little road space.
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    How much is this new drivetrain going to cost? I'd think a gas turbine-electric would be a little more than a plain diesel piston engine.
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    i am sure purchasing costs would be higher, but that would be offset by lower operating and maintenance costs. so over the long term it may be significantly cheaper than a normal diesel, and that doesnt even factor in environmental savings.
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  15. #15
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    We have hybrid bus's in our city.
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