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Tube aircon

Compressed air at stations
 
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London Underground say they can't install aircon on their tube trains for a myriad of reasons, including that the trains aren't big enough to install aircon units, that aircon will only succeed in redistributing the heat, etc.

I have an idea for a scheme which might be a technical challenge to implement, but it could work.

There isn't enough room on trains for aircon, but there is plenty of room at stations. Under the track at stations, there is a "suicide pit". This is become less necessary as some stations (new ones anyway) start to get platform edge doors. The suicide pit can be used to install refrigeration units that take air from the station, cool it, and compress it for storage. When a train arrives at the station, the cold air is released as a quick blast into the train, giving welcome refreshment to the passengers. Since trains would arrive at a new station about every two minutes, they'd get a regular supply of colder air (better than nothing at the moment). More air could be cooled at stations in between trains. The hot air produced by the aircon units at stations would be expelled through the usual ventilation systems.

The difficult bit would be getting the cold air into the trains. Maybe the trains could receive the cold air somehow and gradually release it into the train through the ventilation systems. But if they could make mailtrains that grab post bags off posts as they speed by 100 years ago, I'm sure this isn't an insurmountable problem.

peterb, Jul 11 2003

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       Cool! +
Shz, Jul 11 2003
  

       It'd be interesting to see how this would affect the existing ventilation of the Tube. Some lines, the Victoria being one, are only ventilated by the motion of the trains and there's a time limit as to how long occupied trains can be stopped between stations before passengers start passing out. From memory it's about 20 minutes. Makes getting 'one-unders' out a much harder task for the emergency services. This might go some way to ameilorating this if they squirted cooled air into the tunnels regardless of if the trains were there or not.
oneoffdave, Jul 11 2003
  

       hi
everestrefrigeration, Feb 28 2004
  

       It might be easier to load stored 'coldness' on board by carrying ice.
KiwiJohn, Feb 29 2004
  

       [peterb] The issue is how to get the heat OUT of the stations. These are often 100ft+ below the ground. Cooling whatever (air, liquid) underground just moves the heat from one thing to another and the energy still remains underground.   

       This was not a problem until recently, when they realised that all the substrata around the tubes and stations had risen in temperature to well over 70degF/ 20degC all year.   

       So, not only do you need to cool the air and the people but remove 100 years of accumulated heat energy from the surrounding soil.   

       [kiwiJohn] Sounds like u worked for the Underground (schedules, perhaps?)
timbeau, Feb 29 2004
  
      
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