IF articles

Automated People Movers with rope traction: engineering and modelling an innovative hybrid solution to optimise energy use

Summary - At the beginning of the 21st century, several scientific studies drew attention to the unsustainability of the massive use of fossil fuels as the main global source of energy and this led to international public organisations starting numerous projects aimed at containing the result- ing greenhouse gas emissions. In this context, Automated People Movers can play an important role, as they are fully automated transport systems operating on a fixed track, along which the vehicles can be pulled by one or more steel wire ropes. This feature makes it possible to manufacture lighter and less energy consuming vehicles because of the on-board absence of propulsion, transmission and energy accumulation elements, with a consequent lightening of the structural parts. The use of electric energy to power these transport systems makes it possible to take advantage of energy sources that are not necessarily black-oil depen- dent.
The energy aspect has been analysed using an original simulation model, developed with MATLAB®, in which several variables, including the vehicle load factor, have been considered.
The results, expressed in terms of gep/(pass·km)(1), have been compared with the specific energy consumption of al- ternative urban transit systems, according to the most re- cent technical literature.

  • Novembre
Num. 11
Pag. 901