The Anonymous Widower

Ashford Spurs On Track

The title of this post is the same as an article in the December 2017 Edition of Modern Railways.

I wrote about the Ashford Spurs in Kent On The Cusp Of Change – Ashford Spurs.

The Modern Railways article starts with this paragraph.

The launch of Eurostar e320 services from Ashford International has been pencilled in for 3 April 2018, foillowing progress with the Ashford Spurs project.

Surely, a result of their completion will be that more services will stop at Ashford International station.

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

This Is What I Call A MOAB

Jamestown is a small Australian town of a few over fourteen hundred souls, probably home to several million flies and some of the most venomous spiders and snakes known to man.

I have never visited the town, but I must have flown nearly over it, when I flew a Piper AQrrow around Australia with C.

Just to the North of the town is the Hornsdale Wind Farm, which consists of 99 wind turbines with a generating capacity of 315 MW.

But this is not what brought the wind farm to my attention in an article in today’s Times under a headline of Biggest Ever Battery Plugs City’s Energy Gap.

This is said.

The battery array was built after a high-stakes bet by Elon Musk, 46, the US technology billionaire behind Tesla electric cars, that he could meet a 100-day building deadline or he would give the system away.

Wikipedia has a section on this battery.

This is said.

South Australia received 90 proposals and considered 5 projects. Tesla, Inc. is building the world’s most powerful lithium ion battery adjacent to the wind farm. It has two sections; a 70 MW running for 10 minutes, and a 30 MW with a 3 hour capacity. Samsung 21700-size cells are used.

It will be operated by Tesla and provide a total of 129 megawatt-hours (460 GJ) of storage capable of discharge at 100 megawatts (130,000 hp) into the power grid. This will help prevent load-shedding blackouts and provide stability to the grid (grid services) while other generators can be started in the event of sudden drops in wind or other network issues. It is intended to be built in 100 days counting from 29 September 2017, when a grid connection agreement was signed with Electranet, and some units were operational. The battery construction was completed and testing began on 25 November 2017. It is owned by Neoen and Tesla, with the government having the ability to call on the stored power under certain circumstances.

It certainly seems to be the Mother-Of-All-Batteries! Hence MOAB!

The Times is reporting that the battery system has cost £30 million.

This works out at about £233,000 to store each Megawatt-Hour stored.

When you consider that we have five offshore that are bigger than the Hornsdale Wind Farm, surely it is only a matter of time before we add a battery to one.

These MOABs are an intriguing concept!

 

November 27, 2017 Posted by | World | , , , , | Leave a comment

Successful Trial Means Tube On Track For 4G Coverage By 2019

The title of this post is the same as this article on Rail Technology Magazine. This is said.

The Tube network will see 4G connectivity arrive in 2019, TfL has confirmed, meaning mayor Sadiq Khan’s original ambitions will be able to go ahead.

The news comes following a successful trial of the technology on the Waterloo & City line, where 4G technology was tested in tunnels and stations along the line in the summer.

I wonder how long it will be before all trains, trams and buses have 4G connectivity.

In some ways, I think providing 4G connectivity outside stations, bus stops and other important places is more important.

Suppose you are stuck in an area with no signal and perhaps you have fallen over and seriously cut your leg and need help or just a lift home.

Wouldn’t it be so much better, if you could find somewhere, where you know you could summon assistance or a lift?

I have two questions.

  1. Will 4G connectivity be added to the Overground?
  2. Will 4G connectivity be switch on station-by-station and line-by-line or in one go in 2019?

In some posts about this, it is suggested that a driving force behind the connectivity, is that the emeergency services are moving to mobile phone technology. So if that is the case, then the answers to these questions must be in the affirmative!

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Computing, Transport | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Development Of Knightsbridge Station

Knightsbridge station is an important station on the Piccadilly Line.

It is unusual in that it is one of the few double-ended tube station, with one entrance at Sloane Street by Harvey Nicholls and the other along the Brompton Road at Harrods.

I took these pictures on a Sunday morning as I walked around the station.

The existing building over the Sloane Street entrance is being redeveloped. Wikipedia gives these details.

The residential development of One Hyde Park opposite the station features an entrance to the station which is the diverted closed off exit. It re-opened in December 2010.

In 2017, a developer will refurbish the block above the station and close exits 3 and 4 that lead to Brompton Road and Sloane Street. When this work is complete, there will be a new entrance in Brompton Road, the two exits having been blocked permanently. The station will also feature Step Free Access available from a new entrance in Hooper’s Court, where the original station first opened, with lifts in the original lift shaft that will led to the Piccadilly platforms.

This page on the TfL web site gives more details. This is said.

Knightsbridge Tube station will have step-free access in 2020, reached by a new entrance at Hooper’s Court.

Two new lifts will serve the Piccadilly line platforms, making the station step-free from street level to the trains.

A second new entrance will open at 15 Brompton Road in 2019, replacing the former entrance on the corner of Sloane Street and Brompton Road. The pavement on Brompton Road and Sloane Street will be widened, making more room for pedestrians.

Note that the new entrance at 15 Brompton Road will be about halfway between the corner and the LK Bennett store, which is at 39-41.

Conclusion

It looks as if Knightsbridge tube station will be very much improved.

But!

  • Cutting the traffic through the area would help.
  • I can’t say that I’m impressed with the new entrance to the station on the North side of Knightsbridge.

At least the entrance by Harrods, is much more in keeping with the area.

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Two Units Of Adnams Beer

This picture shows eight bottles of Marks and Spencer’s 0.5% Southwold Pale Ale, which is brewed by Adnams.

Astonishingly, there are just 2 units of alcohol, which cost just £12.80 in total.

But even more astonishingly, the beer has a good taste for a low-alcohol beer.

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Food | , , | Leave a comment

A Thank You At Waterloo Station

I saw this at Waterloo station.

Why not?

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Transport | | Leave a comment

Bond Street Station Gets A New Entrance

The new entrance to Bond Street tub station has now opened on the North side of Oxford Street.

This makes it easier to enter and exit the station on the department store side of the street.

Transport for London have produced a video called Bond Street station redevelopment for 2017 – virtual tour walk-through – Tube improvements.

It illustrates several features of the enlarged station.

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Transport | , | Leave a comment

Steaming Along The Overground

According to this article on Ian Visits, the North London Line will have an unusual visitor on Saturday, December the 2nd.

A passenger steam train will be passing through on its way from Southend to Alton.

Useful timing are.

  • 09:58 – Barking
  • 10:03 – Woodgrange Park
  • 10:08 – Forest Gate
  • 10:14 – Stratford
  • 10:26 – Canonbury
  • 10:31 – Camden Road
  • 10:48 – South Hampstead
  • 10:54 – Kensal Green
  • 11:07 – Acton Central

On December 2nd, 2012, I posted Tornado At Canonbury Station.

 

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Transport | , | Leave a comment

Boosting The Cross-Border Economy

The title of this post, is the same as this article on the BBC. It starts like this.

If they wanted a name-check in the budget, then they got it.

But there was little more detail – for the time being at least – about the growth deal for the Borderlands.

The chancellor announced the UK government would “begin negotiations” on it and work with local partners and the Scottish government.

I feel very strongly, that boosting this Borderlands could be of real value to both countries and obviously this is behind the Government’s thinking.

The article attempts to answer the questions it poses and proposes various transport upgrades.

I would do the following to the railways.

  • Complete the Borders Railway to Carlisle.
  • Create a rail link from Carlisle to Belfast with a bridge between Stanraer and Larne.
  • Improve the Carlisle to Newcastle rail line.
  • Electrify the Glasgow to Carlisle rail line via Dumfries.
  • Improve operating speeds on both the West and East Coast Main Lines.

The BBC also suggests some roads for improvement.

This is an area to watch.

 

 

 

November 27, 2017 Posted by | Transport, World | , | Leave a comment