- for Taxi2000 and the SWE technology
1. Letter regarding competitions won by Taxi2000.
- From Ed Anderson, the ”grand old man” of the company – and in this branch.
2. A collection of references - from various sources.
3. An excerpt of a 2003 report by ATRA, the association for advanced transport.
But first a chronology - from 1968 and onwards:
Some History of the Taxi 2000 Development Effort and its Present Value:
----- Original Message -----
From: Ed Anderson
To: Arno Mong Daastoel
Sent: Monday, January 20, 2003 1:08 AM
Subject: RE: References for Taxi2000
SeaTac (1992): PRT using our specifications was compared with bus, LRT, and large-vehicle people movers for an application in around the SeaTac International Airport. PRT won the unanimous vote of a 17-person steering committee. The best independent reference would be Liz Sroufe.
Chicago (1993): An RFP was sent out in April 1990 for design studies of PRT. Two $1.5M studies were to be awarded. Taxi 2000 with Stone & Webster as prime won one of the two studies. Then in 1993 the RTA Board chose the team of Raytheon & Taxi 2000 over the other contractor for a $40 million test program.
Cincinnati (1998): The process how Taxi 2000 was selected over about 50 other elevated rail systems has been documented in detail on www.skyloop.org
What have Others Said About PRT and Taxi 2000.
( - fra "T2 and Its Business" : Note the first 3 and especially # 3:)
1. "The safety design philosophy of Taxi 2000 deserves praise." Technical Committee on Personal Rapid Transit, Advanced Transit Association, Journal of Advanced Transportation, 22:3(1988).
2. "Taxi 2000 and its approach to PRT are first class." Walter H. Stowell, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Raytheon Equipment Division, following intensive two-week study in March 1990.
3. "The Taxi 2000 system is an inherently low-risk development because it is based on mature technology."
"We have a very high level of confidence that it will work." "It is a straightforward application." Stone & Webster Engineering Corporation, final report to the Chicago Regional Transportation Authority, April 1992.
4. "I am confident that PRT will prove to be a risk that will pay enormous dividends for this region." Thomas J. McCraken Jr., Chicago RTA Chairman, PRT Update, Sept. 1996.
5. "Our recommendation is therefore clear—a PRT system provides such a broad range of desired qualities that it should be given highest priority in research, development, testing, and demonstration for implementation in the urban environment." Göran Tegnér, Business Manager International, TRANSEK Consultants Company, Solna, Sweden.
6."Advanced PRT systems of the type proposed in this article provide a cost-effective and environmentally advantageous solution to the problems of transport in the 21st century." Martin V. Lowson, Director, Advanced Transit Group, University of Bristol, United Kingdom.
7. "Technical solutions to urban congestion do exist and are now available in financially viable terms with the advent of PRT technology, which offers the way to achieve all of our objectives while offering enhanced urban form and improved lifestyle." Raymond A. MacDonald, Transportation Consultant, Woo-Bo Enterprise Company, Seoul, Korea.
8. "PRT has a definite, emerging place in American transportation systems." Dr. Lonnie E. Haefner, International Editor-in-Chief of the John Wiley journal Infrastructure.
9. "Even when road capacity is sufficient for transport needs, the energy investment in a PRT system can be recovered in four or five years." Eva Gustavsson, Swedish Road and Transport Research Institute, Journal of Advanced Transportation, 30:3(1996).
10. "Personal Rapid Transit is the more promising solution for the mobility needs of a sustainable urban future." Andrew Euston, Office of Community Planning and Development, U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, February 1997.
11. "Personal rapid transit is one technology that holds great promise for urban transit systems." Emory Bundy, Seattle political scientist. http://faculty.washington.edu/~jbs/itrans/bundden.htm.
12. "The Taxi 2000 PRT system is our primary selected technology for our project." Sky Loop Committee, Cincinnati, http://www.skyloop.org/.
(Quotes 5 through 8 come from a special issue of Infrastructure devoted to Personal Rapid Transit Systems, Spring 1997, based on papers from the International Conference on PRT and other Emerging Transportation Systems, sponsored by the ITS Institute, Center for Transportation Studies, University of Minnesota, November 18-20, 1996.)
The Advanced Transit Association (ATRA):
A report by the Personal Rapid Transit Technical Committee of the Advanced Transit Association:
ATRA: Personal Transportation, Evaluation (Sept 2002) Page 36
This vendor REVIEWED this report prior to publication.
Taxi 2000 operates on top of a guideway narrower than the vehicle. The guideway is a single box beam with a slot on the top and bottom. The entire wheel set is inside the beam and the cabin is above the beam. The wheel set consists of a short front axle and a short rear axle, with four main wheels, plus several lateral guidance and switch-related wheels.
The vehicle seats 3.
The vehicle runs on cushion tires and is propelled by dual linear induction motors. It is small and contains a single bench seat facing forwards.
Min. curve radius
The vehicle is 1.47 m tall from the interior and station floor to the outside top, and an additional 1 m extending below the floor to the bottom of the main support wheels. The latter measurement overlaps with the guideway height, since the wheels are inside the box beam.
The beams are supported by posts every 29 m.(8)
Taxi 2000 was founded by Dr. Ed Anderson, Ph. D. P.E., who is the author of Transit Systems Theory, and is perhaps the most widely known long-time advocate for PRT. He has lectured widely and developed courses on transit theory.
The design of Taxi 2000 began in 1982 after 13 years of intensive involvement in PRT including chairing three international conferences on PRT (1971, 1973, 1975),
development of the textbook Transit Systems Theory, 9 months of Dr. Anderson’s work at the Colorado RTD, 18 months at Raytheon in an effort to move that company into the field of PRT, and 3 years as U. S. Representative for Cabintaxi.
Over $32 million in cash and in kind investment has gone into Taxi 2000.
The Taxi 2000 technology was licensed, altered and further funded and developed by Raytheon. This altered system was called PRT 2000. It progressed to a final working
demonstration system in full scale before the project was canceled. Raytheon may also wish to sell that system, but declined to participate in this study. Taxi 2000 is a different system from PRT 2000, and Dr. Anderson emphasizes that
Raytheon made design choices that went against the basic principles of Taxi 2000.
Quoting the company, “All the research and development work required has been done. Designs for all subsystems have been developed. Programs have been written to study lateral and pitch motion of the vehicles, from which sizes and placement of wheels and other components have been determined. The guideway in straight and curved sections has been analyzed by computer by Davy McKee Corporation, United Engineers and Constructors, and Stone & Webster Engineering Corporation.
Preliminary drawings have been done. What remains is to hire an engineering team to update all specifications and build a test system.”
“None of the components of the system are developmental - all can be procured directly. The software to operate the whole system has been developed, which I believe is unique. Taxi 2000 has won international competitions sponsored by SeaTac, WA (1992), the Chicago RTA (1993), and the Cincinnati Sky Loop Committee (1998) – see www.skyloop.org. No other PRT systems have won any competitions in which we have participated.”
Recently, Taxi 2000 has raised $500k (of $1M sought) for the prototype construction, and component manufacturers have been lined up.
The system passed all evaluation points.
Taxi 2000 is by far the most funded development effort of those listed in this report. (Cabintaxi has spent around three times as much, (9) but is not included in the report at their request.). Many of the more specialized issues identified as having been researched and solved by Taxi 2000, such as computer modeling of the vehicle motion, detailed study of forces on each component and required stiffness, etc., were not even mentioned by most other vendors as issues to study, indicating that they may not have gotten that far yet.
Since Taxi 2000 has not yet built a prototype, it cannot be called market-ready, but the amount of effort to date (plus the apparent success of the PRT 2000 prototype, which was initially based on Taxi 2000) suggests that a prototype would go smoothly according to design.
Summary: Taxi 2000 has undergone extensive engineering, but still needs to build a test system before being market-ready. We have no reservations about its ability to perform as advertised, with the information we have available.
7 There is nothing inherent in the system that would prevent a smaller radius. “Operationally, we have seen no case in which the speed would be low enough so that one could pass through a 36-ft curve radius within ride-comfort limits.”
8 According to the inventor, “I was able to derive an exact solution for a curved beam under uniform load, from which we are very confident about the ability to do 90-ft spans. We meet the AASHTO specification of deflection less than 1/800th of the span with fully loaded vehicles nose-to-tail on the guideway.”