Monica M. Suter, PE, TE, PTOE for the City of Santa Ana, CA is currently an International Director with ITE. She previously served as Western District President (2008-2009) and promoted the profession with her “Getting to ‘Yes’ With the Public & Elected Officials” presentation. She manages an engineering team for the City of Santa Ana with 26 years of private and public sector experience. Ms. Suter joined ITE as a Michigan State University student. Since then she’s presented/published several International/District ITE papers, and served as a co-instructor for ITS Tech Transfer/UC Berkeley’s MUTCD Course. Ms. Suter is a Signals Technical Committee Member of the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devices and was an ITE Associate Member in 2011. She is currently an APWA Associate Member.
Please join us for our 13th General Meeting this Thursday, May 16 during U-hour 12-1 PM, in the Transportation Lab (17-2646). We will be hosting Justin Fornelli, P.E. as our guest speaker who will be discussing upcoming projects associated with SANBAG’s Transit and Rail Program. You can find his full bio below. Lunch from In-N-Out will be provided on a first-come first-serve basis. See you there!
Induction Charging Comes to Public Transit
Say goodbye to catenary wires. Utah State University has unveiled an electric bus that charges through induction, topping off its batteries whenever it stops to pick up passengers.
Designed by USU’s Wireless Power Transfer team and the Utah Science Technology and Research initiative’s Advanced Transportation Institute, the prototype Aggie Bus is already on the road. It uses the same wireless charging principle as an electric toothbrush or a wireless smartphone charger, except optimized for a massive public-transit vehicle.
As in all modern inductive-charging setups, a transformer is “split” between the bus and a charge plate under the bus stop. When the bus drives over the charging plate, current flows with no physical contact required. Engineers at USU designed their system so that the Aggie Bus can be misaligned up to 6 inches from the charge plate and still get 25kW of power and 90 percent efficiency from the power grid to the battery.
At a recent gathering of the West Hollywood City Council, a representative from Evacuated Tube Transportation Technologies (ET3) said the city was ready for tube travel, the WeHo News reports. Nick Grazilli, a local, told the council that WeHo is the perfect testing ground for a maglev personal rapid transit pilot program–ideally it could connect with the Red Line in Hollywood and the Purple Line when it eventually hits La Cienega. The system would carry car-sized capsules through “an automated tube network without air friction,” topped with solar panels. The system “is faster than jets,” however, the pilot would only travel between 30 and 40 miles per hour, which Grazilli says would enable commuters to cross WeHo in about two minutes (does that add up?). ET3 believess the project could be built with private funds–in less than a year–while those along the right-of-way would share in the revenue. If anyone would say yes to this, it would be WeHo (they have a robot parking garage on the way). No, this isn’t the first time someone has said that pod travel is the answer to LA’s traffic woes.