The Anonymous Widower

Lumo – A View From Across The Pond

I have just read this guide to Lumo on a United States web site called NewsNation USA, which is entitled Lumo Trains: Cheaper London To Edinburgh Fares – What You Need To Know. The article is positive about the new train service.

It only misses out one important detail. Lumo have said, they will have a long booking window, which will surely appeal to travellers on the route from overseas, who are coming to the UK for a holiday and want to visit both cities.

October 26, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | 2 Comments

COP26 And Lumo Branding At King’s Cross Station

I took these pictures as I passed through King’s Cross station today.

Note.

  1. Wilston Samuel Jackson was the first black train driver in the UK.
  2. Lumo seem to have taken over all of the branding at the station.

There was a generally upbeat atmosphere at the station.

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Northern Ends Of The Platforms At Kings Cross Station

These pictures show the Northern ends of the platforms at Kings Cross station.

The two trains are both nine-car Hitachi Class 800 or Class 801 trains and I was standing in line with their noses.

I wonder what is the maximum length of trains that can be handled in these platforms.

  • They can certainly handle ten-car trains, as LNER run these to Leeds.
  • Hitachi have designed the trains, so they can be up to twelve-cars, which are 312 metre long trains.
  • Looking at maps, I suspect that eleven-car trains would be the largest that can be handled.

But surely to maximum the number of passengers handled in the station, the platforms should be able to handle the longest Hitachi trains.

  • Unless, the capacity of an individual train is limited by the gate-lines and Network Rail have said that ten-car trains are the longest allowed.
  • Or would twelve-car trains be two far to walk with lots of luggage.

But ten-car trains would allow Lumo to double-up trains to increase capacity selectively, when perhaps, there is an important sporting event.

So when say the Culcutta Cup is taking place, an early morning train to the match and a late evening return could be doubled to add another four hundred seats.

But the current Lumo timetable only shows just two trains on a Saturday.

  • London King’s Cross – Edinburgh, which leaves at 10:25 and arrives at 14:57.
  • Edinburgh – London King’s Cross, which leaves at 08:49 and arrives at 13:17.

Not very good to go to the rugby or a birthday lunch with your mum.

But realtimetrains reveals two early morning paths allocated to Lumo.

  • London King’s Cross – Edinburgh, which leaves at 05:45 and arrives at 10:06.
  • Edinburgh – London King’s Cross,  which leaves at 05:36 and arrives at 10:04.

So you can get to the other capital, but is there a later last train back?

Oh! Yes there is! And again they are revealed by realtimetrains.

  • London King’s Cross – Edinburgh, which leaves at 18:27 and arrives at 22:56.
  • Edinburgh – London King’s Cross, which leaves at 17:56 and arrives at 22:29.

Is the Southbound service earlier, as Murrayfield is closer to Waverly station, than Twickenham is to King’s Cross?

If the return was fifty pounds and the trains were doubles, that could be revenue of around  £ 40,000. There would be more electricity and track access charges, and they’d need extra train crew, but Lumo would surely be quids in!

Lumo’s financial model has several nice little earners.

 

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Finance, Sport, Transport/Travel | , , , , , | 2 Comments

The First Lumo Service Arrives In London

These pictures show the first Lumo service as it arrives in Platform 5 at King’s Cross station.

Note.

The clock showed the train arrived five minutes early.

The train appeared to be about ninety percent full!

How close is the train colour to LNER blue?

The picture shows two iconic A4 Pacifics; Mallard and Dominion of Canada at the National Railway Museum.

Not very is the probable answer!

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

Lumo’s Seats Are OK

I went down to King’s Cross to see the 1348 Lumo arrival from Edinburgh arrive (At 1343 incidentally!)

The seats seemed to be a big topic with passengers I talked to, who’d just spent four-and-a-half hours sitting on them!

I will replace these pictures with better ones, when I use the trains. But they do show the basic design.

But all felt positive about them and said they were better than LNER.

One guy showed me a video of pushing his hand into the seat cushion. It appeared they would make bad ironing boards.

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Design, Transport/Travel | , , , | Leave a comment

Track Monitoring System To Be Tested On Chiltern Line

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Railway Gazette.

This is the first paragraph.

Network Rail is to undertake in-service trials with DB Systemtechnik’s CTM2·0 continuous track monitoring system on a Chiltern Railways MkIII driving van trailer operating in passenger service between London Marylebone and Birmingham.

This seems to me to be a good idea.

  • The German system appears to be comprehensive and has been in service for seven years.
  • There is a lot of space in the back of a driving van trailer.
  • It probably can do much of the work of the New Measurement Train, but more often.

It could surely be applied to other routes.

 

The picture shows the driving van trailers on the London-ends of a pair of InterCity 225s at King’s Cross.

Some Open Access Operators are also looking at the possibility of running short InterCity 225 sets.

It would also be possible to create extra Measurement Trains, by coupling an instrumented driving van trailer to an appropriate locomotive and a couple of coaches.

As a Control Engineer, who has analysed a lot of data in his working life, it could improve rail safety by testing rail lines more often.

October 25, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Diamond Light Source And PETase

When I was writing Diamond Synchrotron Sparkles And Shows Its Value To UK Economy, I came across a reference to PETase, in an article in Chemistry World, where this was said about the Diamond Light Source.

‘It is the facilities in the UK that really make the difference and make us a world leader,’ comments John McGeehan, professor of structural biology at the University of Portsmouth.

His team has used Diamond to study the bacterial enzyme PETase, which digests plastic. ‘Diamond’s I23 [long-wave macromolecular crystallography] beamline is unique in the world. It allowed us to solve the 3D structure of the PET-degrading enzyme, first found in plastic dumps in Japan in 2016. Three years ago it was the highest resolution image of the enzyme measured and remains so today. Having this information allows us to understand how the enzyme works, and how to make it work faster and better.’

As a result, the team has been able to visualise the active site of the enzyme and how it consumes plastic. The researchers discovered that the active site was slightly wider than cutinase, a similar enzyme that bacteria use to break down natural plant polyesters. ‘The technology leading from this research means plastic waste can be broken down and put back together into bottles (infinite recycling), or can be made into higher value products such as resins for wind turbine blades,’ says McGeehan. Patents are pending.

Note, that PET is polyethylene terephthalate, which is a very common plastic used to make fabric (Terylene/Dacron) and packaging.

Now that is what I call recycling!

October 24, 2021 Posted by | World | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Diamond Synchrotron Sparkles And Shows Its Value To UK Economy

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Chemistry World, which is a monthly chemistry news magazine published by the Royal Society of Chemistry.

This is the first paragraph.

Diamond Light Source, the UK’s synchrotron, has generated a ‘fantastic return on investment’ since it became operational in 2007. That’s according to a new study that values its socio-economic impacts at around £1.8 billion with each taxpayer contributing £2.45 a year towards it.

If you read the article about the Diamond Light Source, you will find example applications where the synchroton has been used.

  • Non-destructive testing of materials and structures. Some have been over a metre in size and a tonne in weight.
  • Drug discovery and development.
  • A team from the University of Portsmouth has used Diamond to study the bacterial enzyme PETase, which digests plastic.
  • Rolls-Royce has used Diamond to examine the stresses in fan-blades.

The article also states that it has hosted 14,000 users.

With an energy of only 3 GeV, Diamond is not the most powerful synchrotron, but it is certainly one of the most sophisticated.

Related Posts

I have written about the Diamond Light Source in these posts.

The Diamond Light Source is a serious scientific tool, that ranks with the best in the world.

 

October 24, 2021 Posted by | World | , , , , , , | 4 Comments

A Satisfied Lumo Customer In Marks & Spencer

I got talking to an assistant in Marks today and noticed she had a Scottish accent, which isn’t that common in my part of London amongst the young. So I remarked on it.

It turned out she was a student from Fife at University in London, so out of curiosity, I asked her, if she’d heard about Lumo?

She said yes and indicated she was going home on Friday and very much liked the price.

Is Lumo’s message getting through? I think it is!

October 23, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , | Leave a comment

An American Take On Lumo

One of my Google Alerts picked up this article on an American site called Travel + Leisure, which is entitled A Brand-New Train Launched In The UK Today — Linking Cities Like Edinburgh And London For As Little As $20.

As I have sat next to American and Canadian couples and families on Anglo-Scottish trains, I hope that Lumo’s website is friendly to those living outside the UK.

Will The Lumo Concept Take Off In The United States?

I’m no expert, but on the right route, I don’t see why not!

After all, easyJet, Go and Ryanair took on the concept of the low-cost airline, which was pioneered by Pacific Southwest Airlines in California.

October 23, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | 1 Comment