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Neo

Japanese Dual Mode Vehicle (DMV)

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In my latest issue of Wired magazine there was a snippet for a dual mode vehicle that takes the form of a bus but can be transformed into a rail type car in about 15 seconds. I did some looking and found a video showing the technology. It is definately interesting to see and is the first I've heard of a vehicle taking on the two forms of transit.

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The vehicle is ugly as all get out. But the concept looks like it would work and worth developing.

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Agreed on the aesthetics. Curious to know how efficient and safe those thigns are. The concept is fascinating, but I can't see how that provides any benefit over traditional rail/bus combo (minus a moderate traffic reduction).

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It's nothing new. There's something called a HiRail, which is often used by railraqod companies for their maintenance vehicles. These are simple production roadgoing vehicles which have been outfitted with steel wheels for running on rail track. This has been attempted with buses as well, but it has never really worked out. While there are some technical issues, it comes down to the fact that regulations for rail vehicles are much more stringent than for road vehicles. Busses simply cannot meet these regulations. I don't know what that says a lot about our regulations, but it is one of the major hurdles in the way.

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