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Trains


esmith

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Possibly the coolest form of transportation is undoubtedly trains. They're just so darn cool. While some might write off trainsportation as a relic of the days of Manifest Destiny, it's actually becoming much more useful and cool thanks to science. The newest generation of trains does not run on short men in conductor hats shoveling coal into an engine: they run on magnetism. The trains work by strapping a very powerful magnet onto the bottom of the train and having another very powerful magnet in the tracks. The magnetic force between the two allows the train to hover above the tracks. This eliminates the friction of a traditional train and allows it to reach incredibly high speeds of up to 500 km/h (about 310 mph for those who don't believe in the metric system). The train moves because the magnets are electromagnets. This means they can be turned on and off by running a current through them. The train is propelled forward by magnetic fields in front of and behind it on the tracks that push and pull in forward respectively. These new trains are being put into use all over the world, most famously in Japan where they are known as bullet trains (because they go fast). While these trains will probably never come to America because of our crippling inability to fix or improve any of our infrastructure, they are still pretty cool and mark a significant comeback for trains everywhere, and it's all thanks to physics.  

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