Posts Tagged ‘C/2006 P1’

20 June

Solar Powered Maglev/Evacuated Tube Transport For Our Magical Planet Earth


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Wow, we are surely living in a magical time! Another form of upcoming mass transport is based on the magical Maglev (derived from magnetic levitation) with upgrade.   It is a transport method that uses magnetic levitation to move vehicles without touching the ground. A vehicle would travel along a guideway using magnets to create both lift and propulsion, thereby reducing friction and allowing higher speed. Here is a TED Talk that demonstrates this concept, below:

Of  course, such a magical technology would have many potential applications;for example: the Shanghai Maglev Train, also known as the Transrapid, is the fastest commercial train currently in operation and has a top speed of 430 km/h (270 mph) (and once reached 311 mph or 501 km/h in a pre-launch test). The line was designed to connect Shanghai Pudong International Airport and the outskirts of central Pudong, Shanghai. It covers a distance of 30.5 kilometres in 8 minutes.

Maglev Train coming out of Pudong International Airport in Shanghai, China

Maglev Train coming out of Pudong International Airport in Shanghai, China

Maglev trains move more smoothly and more quietly than wheeled mass transit systems. They are relatively unaffected by weather. The power needed for levitation is typically not a large percentage of its overall energy consumption; most goes to overcome drag, as with other high-speed transport. Maglev trains hold the speed record for rail transport. Vacuum tube train systems might allow maglev trains to attain still higher speeds, though no such vacuum tubes have been built commercially yet.

Compared to conventional (normal) trains, differences in construction affect the economics of maglev trains, making them much more efficient. For high-speed trains with wheels, wear and tear from friction along with the “hammer effect” from wheels on rails accelerates equipment wear and prevents high speeds. Conversely, maglev systems have been much more expensive to construct, offsetting lower maintenance costs. Despite decades of research and development, only two commercial maglev transport systems are in operation, with two others under construction. In April 2004, Shanghai’s Transrapid system began commercial operations. In March 2005, Japan began operation of its relatively low-speed HSST “Linimo” line in time for the 2005 World Expo.

Linimo approaching Banpaku Kinen Loen towards Fujigaoka Station (attrib: Chris 73)

Linimo approaching Banpaku Kinen Loen towards Fujigaoka Station (attrib: Chris 73)

In its first three months, the Linimo line carried over 10 million passengers. South Korea and the People’s Republic of China are both building low-speed maglev routes of their own designs, one in Beijing and the other at Seoul’s Incheon Airport. Many maglev projects are controversial, and the technological potential, adoption prospects and economics of maglev systems are often debated.

Even though no commercial vacuum tube train systems have been built yet, scientists at Southwest Jiaotong University in China have reportedly built a maglev train that could reach 1,800 mph (2,900 km/h). A vacuum is used to minimize air resistance, according to The Daily Mail.Dr. Deng Zigang, the project leader, claims such vacuum tube train systems could be used for military or space launch systems. At the high speed of maglev train system, air resistance becomes a serious issue.  Dr. Deng Zigang writes in his paper, “If the running speed exceeds 400 km (250 miles) per hour, more than 83% of traction energy will dissipate wastefully in air resistance.” A maglev train running in a vacuum would increase its potential top speed and improve its efficiency level. If such a theoretical evacuated tube transport (this concept had been around for over 100 years now) may be successfully designed and built,  people potentially will be able to travel between New York and Beijing in 2 hours!


Evacuated Tube Transport model of Southwest Jiaotong University of China (credit: Imagechina)

Evacuated Tube Transport model of Southwest Jiaotong University of China (credit: Imagechina)

Evacuated Tube Transport model of Southwest Jiaotong University of China (credit: Imagechina)

Evacuated Tube Transport model of Southwest Jiaotong University of China (credit: Imagechina)




In one of our previous posts we have also discussed a similar concept, Hyperloop, by Elon Musk, with the added feature of being solar powered and reaching top speed of 760 mph (1,220 km/h).

The beauty of universal collaboration through open-source is such that information in free-flow form, would enable much to be synthesized, exchanged, and edified quickly. Now the scientists and  engineers at Netherland have also taken on the challenge and incorporated the concepts of maglev, evacuated tube, and solar power, working on the Netherland’s Quantum Train (quantum-locking or quantum-levitation). Quantum Train is essentially the solar-powered evacuated tube transport that will be CHEAP, SAFE, FAST, SUSTAINALBE, and GREEN. The future of Quantum Levitation will enable 2 mm thick 3″ diamter superconducting material to carry  approximately 1000 Kg (a small car). The future will be magical ! Many top notched scientists and engineers are working on this at the moment in multiple countries and we are looking forward to the day when Solar Powered Quantum Evacuated Tube Transport/Maglev Train will be transporting us near 1,800 mph on every continent….perhaps even one day transporting us from one continent to another continent in this magical transport system.The world is getting smaller. I am very thankful that we are living in such a magical and collaborative world, full of wonderful scientists and engineers with visions and willingness to collaborate.

Here is another video on future transportation technology:

*If you want to find out more updates or to support the research and development of this technology, please feel free to check with Dr. Deng Zigang and/or Dr. Yaoping Zhang of Southwest Jiaotong University of China or go to: for Netherland’s progress in working with this magical solar powered evacuated tube/maglev transport. Please feel free to contact me at: if you know of any other groups/organizations that is/are currently working on this project and would also like to be mentioned/added into this post.

Other related topics:

1. Hyperlooop

2. ET3 Global Alliance

3. Vactrain (or vacuum tube train)

4. Transatlantic tunnel

5. An Express of the Future by Jules Verne

6. A Brief History of the Pneumatic Tube Transport System That Never Were

~have a bright and sunny day~

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker

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29 November

Comet ISON Survived Perihelion (Grazing With The Sun) On Thanksgiving !


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Great news! We earthlings inhabiting the Northern Hemisphere might be able to get a “once in a lifetime light show” in December, compliment of Comet ISON. Comet ISON  (aka C/2012 S1. The ‘C’ means that it is a non-periodic comet, the ‘S’ means September and the ‘1″ means it was the first that discovered that month. It’s more common name (ISON) comes from the Russia-based International Scientific Optical Network which first discovered it.) passed the Sun on November 28, 2013 when it was about 1 million miles or 1.6 million km from the Sun ( in space terms, it basically means grazing the Sun) and will reach the minimum distance from Earth (64.2 million km) on Dec. 26, 2013. The European Space Agency previously declared ISON’s death on Twitter late on Thursday, but now backtracks, saying Comet ISON  “continues to surprise.”  New images of faint smudge on a screen showed a streak of light moving away from the sun that brings us a sliver of hope that Comet ISON may have survived the grazing with the sun!


STEREO-B COR2 image of c/2012 S1 or Comet ISON re-emerging about 7 hours after perihelion

“It certainly appears as if there is an object there that is emitting material,” said Alan Fitzsimmons, an astronomer at Queens University in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Comet ISON is one of the Sungrazing comets: A sungrazing comet is a comet that passes extremely close to the Sun at perihelion

Comet position of C/2012 S1 on December 11, 2013 after perihelion

– sometimes within a few thousand km (kilometers) of the Sun’s surface. While small sungrazers can be completely evaporated during such a close approach to the Sun, larger sungrazers can survive many perihelion passages. However, the strong evaporation and tidal forces they experience often lead to their fragmentation. Comet ISON is also known as  Comet Nevski–Novichonok,  a sungrazing comet discovered on September 21, 2012, by Vitali Nevski and Artyom Novichonok. The discovery was made using the 0.4-meter (16 in) reflector of the International Scientific Optical Network (ISON) nearKislovodsk, Russia. Data processing was carried out by automated asteroid-discovery program CoLiTec. Precovery images by the Mount Lemmon Survey

Comet C2012 S1 (ISON) seen from the Mount Lemmon SkyCenter on October 8, 2013, as it passes through the constellation of Leo (credit: wikimedia commons)

from December 28, 2011, and by Pan-STARRS from January 28, 2012, were quickly located. Follow-up observations were made on  September 22 by a team from Remanzacco Observatory in Italy using the iTelescope network. The discovery was announced by the Minor Planet Center on September 24. Observations by Swift in January 2013 suggested that C/2012 S1’s nucleus was around 5 kilometers (3 mi) in diameter. Later estimates were that the nucleus was only about 2 kilometers (1 mi) in diameter. C/2012 S1 was at first suspected to have disintegrated near perihelion, but CIOC members suspect a small fragment of it has survived perihelion passage because a coma has been detected.

The path of C/2012 S1 (ISON) from December 2012 through October 2013 as it passes through Gemini, Cancer, and Leo (credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/Axel Mellinger)

Comet ISON, imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope on April 10, 2013-near Jupiter's orbit; also, enhanced (coma model ratio) version (credit: NASA, ESA, and Z. Levay, ST ScI)










So, what kind of light show might we be able to expect from Comet ISON or C/2012 S1 ? Its absolute magnitude or intrinsic brightness seems to be between two previous spectacular comets: Comet C/1965 S1 (Ikeya-Seki)

Comet Ikeya-Seki (credit: Roger Lynds/NOAO/AURA/NSF)

and Comet C/2006 P1 (McNaught) .

Comet McNaught (source: wikipedia)

Both of these comets passed by the Sun very closely and were possibly the two brightest since the 1930s. Ikeya-Seki of the absolute magnitude 3.9 and McNaught 9.5 . The magnitude system is ordered such that fainter objects have higher values. It is also on a logarithmic scale, where a difference of 2.5 magnitudes corresponds to a factor of 10 in apparent brightness. A 5 magnitude difference is a factor of 100. Given the same distance from the Sun and distance from the Earth, Comet ISON would be roughly 25 times brighter than Comet McNaught and one-seventh as bright as Comet Ikeya-Seki. There may be quite an exciting show awaiting us in December of 2013!

~have a bright and sunny day~

gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
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CIOC (NASA Comet ISON Observing Campaign)

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