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27 Jul 2017

Futuristic travel: India could soon have metrinos, hyperloops and more!

Public transport in India set for massive overhaul

Public transportation in India is set for a massive overhaul. If all goes according to plan, citizens can expect to have as many as six new modes of rapid mass transport.

In January, Metro Man E Sreedharan had suggested setting up networks for hyperloop, metrinos, pod taxis, freight railroad, stadler buses and hybrid buses.

The NITI Aayog has now approved the proposals.

In context

Public transport in India set for massive overhaul
What new modes exactly can we expect?


What new modes exactly can we expect?

Metrinos are automated pods which run on an overhead cable network. They can carry small groups and are available on demand. Pod taxis are similar to automated cable-cars.

Hybrid buses are a conventional environment-friendly transport network that run on hybrid propulsion systems. It consists of diesel and electric ones.

For freight railroads, trucks would move on elevated corridors with rail lines at high speed.

And the hyperloop too!

Perhaps the most futuristic is the hyperloop. It is a pod-like vehicle that travels through a tube network in near-vacuum-like conditions. They can complete intercity trips at speeds faster than aircraft. Technologies like partial magnetic levitation and regenerative braking help keep energy consumption low.

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If safety tests go well, these modes soon on roads

The six systems for intercity travel are currently in use globally. A six-member committee has been formed to assess their safety before they are launched for commercial use.

Trials will be conducted by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways.

If it goes well, public transport speed is expected to go up while pushing down cost. The metrino costs one-tenth that of the metro.

However, no driverless cars in the near future

Contrarily, Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari recently said the government won't allow driverless cars as they will eventually cause joblessness. Instead, the government will focus on imparting adequate driving skills to ensure employment of 50 lakh people.

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