Thursday, June 19, 2008

Modern Marvels: Locomotives

They're the power that delivers the goods and the speed that pushes physics. They connect oceans and move men deep below the Earth's surface, they're crafted for safety and built to last. Powered by diesel, electricity or steam, they come in all shapes and sizes, some even ride on air. Now the untold story of Locomotive from the History Channel series Modern Marvels. See it here posted in 5 Parts on Saturday, June 21!

Race through the French countryside at nearly 300 MPH on the fastest locomotive in the world. Ride on the little engines that could as they guide giant ships through the Panama Canal. Watch two locomotives crash head-on as the federal government monitors safety. Descend 700 feet below the earth's surface where mining locomotives move miners through a maze of tunnels. Then, it's a "jiffy lube" for locomotives inside America's largest maintenance shop. Finally, glide into the future with a locomotive that levitates on a cushion of air.


A modern diesel-electric locomotive can move one ton of freight an average of 202 miles on a gallon of diesel fuel. A modern 18 wheeler truck can only move a ton of freight 50 miles on the same gallon.

In 1896 40,000 spectators watched two unmanned steam locomotive crash head on during a publicity stunt in central Texas. Flying debris from the impact killed three spectators and injured six more. It was the last publicity stunt of its kind.

Since the Panama Canal opened in 1914, locomotives have guided more than 900,000 ships though the locks. The one day record was set on February 29th, 1968 when 65 sups made the passage.

It takes the underground locomotive in the Bailey Mine approximately one hour to haul supplies and workers the ten miles between the entrance of the mine and the working section of the mine.


No comments: