Electricity and Magnetism in transport system.
The resultant energy from existing charged particles that are either static or in motion is called electricity and such energy can be used in homes, industries and in transport system. Whereas magnetism is a physical aspect that involves the electric charges, their motion and effect thus producing fields that repel and attract other objects (Kirkland, 2007). Electromagnetism plays an important role in our life and it is believed that it will change the future especially when it comes to transportation. Therefore electricity and magnetism can be considered to be inextricably linked in many cases; the essay will hence argue the merits and disadvantages of using electricity and magnetism in our future transport system.
Transport system is a vital aspect to a country and his citizens’ economy growth. When it is unreliable, poor and inefficient, it affects the countries economy as goods and services movement from one place to another is hindered as people’s movement is too snarled. Road is the most common mode of transport that people use but in most underdeveloped countries, its construction and maintenance has become a challenge and as a result therefore, they are in bad condition to be solemnly relied on for a countries economy boost (Saunders & Solway, 2008). Electric and magnetic transport system is thus considered as alternative means of transport to boost economy in goods and service delivery; moreover, it helps resolve the rush hour dilemma of moving large number of people.
The idea of magnetic levitation can be traced back to the eras when trains were commonly used as a mode of transportation. A French engineer Emile Bachelet developed a working model of magnetic levitation a few years after Robert Goddard wrote an article describing a vehicle that could move by means of magnetic levitation. The electromagnetic transportation system will be pollution-free and versatile, the ultra capacitors being developed for electric cars to replace batteries, are lighter and provide ten times the energy density of lead-acid batteries. Other developments are the permanent magnet powered motors, Spiral Wankel Magnetic Motor and others of different designs, all using the magnetic gradient (Saunders et al. 2008).
The magnetic force produced by simple bars of magnets is too small and as such, they cannot keep magnets of the same like poles suspended in the air. By inducting electric current to such magnets, a powerful magnet field is created that can exert repulsive force to lift heavy objects (Saunders et al. 2008). Therefore, inducting such strong electromagnetic field on the train trucks to lift the train and providing the propulsive force by the electric current to push it, will not only decrease the environmental and health hazardous emissions that are imposed by fossil fuel combustible engines automobiles but also increase its speed to transport people and goods.
Super buses are electric and hydrogen-powered big busses that can travel over the highways connecting different cities; they are efficient, reliable and can carry a large number of passengers, thus reducing the number of vehicles travelling to such destinations. This will be beneficial to people who own cars and as a result therefore reducing the amount of poisonous gasses emitted from the fossil fuel combustible engine vehicle to the atmosphere, moreover the super buses will allow cars to pass underneath them, thus no disruption to the traffic and no need to build an independent track system (Saunders et al. 2008).
Fossil fuel burning combustion engine vehicle emits poisonous gases such carbon dioxide and sulpher dioxide to the atmosphere. These gases affects both the flora and fauna thereby retardating their development, moreover, they have diverse effect to the atmospheres’ ozone layer (Kirkland, 2007). In addition, fuel engine vehicles are noisy and as a result, they can be annoying and nuisance at times, therefore in their visions’, developing countries like Kenya have strategized to implement electrified transportation system to help them satisfy the intended goals that are set by the environmental bodies to reduce the emission of carbon from fossil fuel burning engines.
Apart from the ultra capacitors developed for electric cars to replace the normally used batteries, a possible future power source is fuel cells. The cells produce electricity from a chemical reaction, whereas the normal batteries use chemicals stored inside them, the fuel cell is provided with an external fuel supply (Kirkland, 2007). An experimental car that uses liquid hydrogen fuel is being developed in Germany; it has a hydrogen tank that gets filled at hydrogen filling station.
The major technological development in future transportation system will be the use of electricity to power the cars and trucks. Manufactures have been experimenting with different cars developed one after the other for many years, but the results are that these cars are not as fast as the normal ones, moreover, the major drawback about them is that the time taken to recharge their batteries is enormous compared to time taken to refuel the conventional cars (Saunders et al. 2008). With numerous technological development and innovations that the manufacturers are coming up with, these problems will be solved in future.
Technology has been the driving force to creation and implementation of ideas that
seemed impossible. The future transportation system is therefore viewed to be promising;
experiments are being undertaken at Stanford University using magnetic fields to wirelessly
transmit electric current between metals a distance apart to create an electric highway that would
wirelessly charge cars and trucks as they cruise the road (Saunders et al. 2008). This will
therefore largely reduce the high rate dependency on fuel as energy in the transport sector,
improves efficiency, reliability and reduce road carnage casualties that are experienced using the
fuel combustion engines.
Technological development benefits of electromagnetism has made the marshall space flight center at NASA in developing a space vehicle that increase the safety, reliability and reduce the cost of space transportation. The engineers tend to use the magnetic levitation technology to help them accelerate the space vehicles along the track while launch them into the orbit (Saunders et al. 2008). However, most of the electromagnetism propulsion ideas in the aerospace industry are still conceptual and yet to be implemented, the crafts conceptually use their own electromagnetic field in direct relation to that of the earth to fine tune and control the orbiting satellites.
In as much as the future transportation system maybe seen to be promising with in the induction of electricity and magnetism, the drawbacks perceived to accompany such success are on the rise even though the developers try to minimize them. In the experimental activity project by the Stanford University, the highway infrastructure must be redesigned and rebuilt (Kirkland, 2007). This has many consequences as it will affect and involve many people in re-planning, displacement and compensation to the affected.
Technological ideas implementation isn’t easy to the developing countries as they come with different challenges and requirements, therefore the transformation processes from one transportation mode to another require much more resources and man power intelligence that such countries are not in a position to provide and as such derails the activities (Saunders et al. 2008). Moreover, the people whose businesses are likely to be affected by such development and those not well informed about the idea may campaign against it resulting into negative opinions.
Man made equipments is expected to malfunction at some point and therefore, they will require repairs from the experienced electricians and mechanics. The technological difference between the current and electric vehicles that will be dependant on electric, fuel cells and ultra capacitors batteries will bring a shift in the traditional automobile mechanic demand (Saunders et al. 2008). The inexperienced will be forced to either loose their job or go back to school. Moreover, this will be a challenge to developing countries for they will have to seek help from the developers.
In conclusion therefore, despite the challenges encountered trying to implement an idea, the future of transportation relies deeply on electrical and magnetic currents and as a result, this will not only be beneficial to the humans’ life but also to the environment. A countries economic growth and its sustainability relies on the infrastructures development, since the transportation sector acts like a link between different development projects to boost a countries welfare, it should be efficiency and reliability.
Kirkland, K. (2007). Electricity and magnetism. New York, NY: Facts On File.
Saunders, N., & Solway, A. (2008). Exploring electricity and magnetism. New York: PowerKids Press.