Hardware

Created cooperatively by scores of individuals working over decades, the ITNS design used by LoopWorks has been thoroughly evaluated. The design and patents are in the public domain, making them "open source". Thus, there is no intellectual property that must be guarded and withheld from the public.

As part of LoopWorks' effort to be transparent, the following is offered in the hope that others will replicate our efforts. While the following offers a visual presentation of the hardware, the details can be found in the 69-page Technical Specifications.

 

PRT Hardware = Guideway + Chassis + Cabin + Station

Guideways

The "road" for PRT vehicles.

While a number of PRT designs use road-like guideways (including Heathrow Airport’s ULTra PRT system), Loopworks will use a narrow guideway with small captive vehicles (bogies). Find references to the reasoning behind the Major Tradeoffs (including guideway factors) on page 9 of the ITNS Business Plan. Final Engineering for the Guideway and Posts is on page 54-56. Here are images of the guideway truss structure.

guideway-truss

The Guideway-Post Bracket keeps the truss assembly secure.

Vehicle Chassis

Small vehicle chassis supports and moves passenger cabin.

Bogies are the engine and chassis for the PRT cabs. Track-switching, suspension, propulsion, backup power, and braking all are facilitated in the bogie. Unlike Heathrow Airport's ULTra PRT system, Loopworks will use wayside power within the guideway rather than on-board power in the vehicle.

 

Small vehicle chassis supports and moves passenger cabin.

The vehicle chassis rolls within the guideway truss structure.

Passenger Cabins

Passenger cabins carry people and their stuff. Unlike most bogies that simply provide support for the load (like rail car bogies), these PRT bogies include propulsion, track-switching, suspension, backup power, and braking in addition to being the chassis for the PRT cabins. Like Heathrow Airport's ULTra PRT system, Loopworks will use small cabs that are still big enough to handle bicycles and wheel chairs.

Here's a sketch of the PRT bogie with passenger cabin mounted above. Find more details about the chassis/bogie on pages 46-54 of the Business Plan.

PRT Stations

Small stations are easy to site; low cost allows for many easy-to-access stations.

Clean, quiet propulsion enables indoor stations.

What does PRT look like in cities?

These images provide an idea of the visual intrusion and routing opportunities.
guideway-in-city Guideway covers can complement their surroundings.
guideway-in-Boulder PRT guideways fit easily within the build environment.
FresnoBallPark-p16-01b-print PRT can serve sporting venues.
PRT merge – Microsoft Guideways merge and diverge; they don't intersect.
guideway-routing If needed, a guideway can cross over another guideway.
station-inside-bldg Clean, quiet propulsion allows for indoor stations.

Want to know more about the design choices?

In the ITNS Business Plan, find both 1) the reasoning behind the Major Tradeoffs on page 9, and 2) details on this list of engineering issues in Appendix A.