When the idea of an elevated bus on the road carrying people was presented to the world by China the calendar read the date year 2010, it has been six years since then. Now the project has moved from being just a model which was showcased in May this year to an actual full-scale working mockup.
Those who have not read about the Transit Elevated Bus or TEB, let’s start with the basic of what it is and why this project was made. The TEB is an elevated bus with a span of 7.8m wide and 22 meters long and 4.8m height, the bus is made to carry 300 passengers at a time. The Transit Elevated Bus runs on a rail, the width of the TEB is such that two lanes of cars can pass under it.
The Transit Elevated Bus was designed to solve the gigantic traffic problem that China faces, in terms of speed and overall cost. Although TEB is single cabin train, up to four carriages can be connected as a train. A four carriage train could replace 40 conventional buses from the road, and thus less congestion on the road as well cutting on fuel consumption to the tune of 882 tonnes per year. With a population running over 1.35 billion, bad to worse pollution conditions building up, and traffic jams expanding to 50 lanes, the country was looking for creating a public transport which would get people stuck in jams.
The TEB has been on the road for its first test which was conducted on 2nd August in the north-eastern city of Qinhuangdao, in Hebei province. The test, however, was done under controlled environment with no bridges, no traffic lights, no crosswalks and no turns. With the TEB being designed in a spacious manner the aim is to make people take public transport and as more cars come off the road it could definitely reduce the problem China and its people are facing due to long traffic jams.
Now with everything new there come dangers associated with it, TEB is no different. Although TEB in itself cannot cause accidents on the road as it runs on predefined rails, but if the cars moving under the bus collide that could turn into a big damage. The TEB also has the advantage that it will not be struck until there is another carriage in front; the bus is expected to reach speeds up to 40 to 50 Km/hr.
Another issue is although TEB is 16 feet high the ground clearance is just 7 feet so only cars below that height can run in the lanes of TEB. The bus runs on electric power and with its systems would need bigger batteries and charging stations at its stops.
With the TEB being able to move over traffic and cars running on the road this could be the solution big cities around the world facing the problems of traffic and pollution are waiting for to happen. With the TEB not actually running on the road but on rails and it being elevated from the road public transport could be revolutionized forever, will that happen is yet to be seen.
Source: China Xinhua News