>>Perhaps we should resurrect the old proposals for underground tubes
>>linking major cities. The tubes are denuded of as much air as possible
>>to lower resistance and mag-leve trains are run in them.
It's the wrong way to go.
Google on Hyde Fountain and Lofstrom Loop, especially the latter. Aw hell,
here's the ref from Anders' lexicon:
LOFSTROM LOOP: An beanstalk-like megaconstruction based on a stream of
magnetically accelerated bars linked together. The stream is sent into
space, where a station rides it using magnetic hooks, redirects it
horizontally to another station, which sends it downwards to a receiving
station on the ground. From this station the stream is then sent back to
the launch station (a purely vertical version is called a space fountain).
This structure would contain a large amount of kinetic energy but could be
built gradually and would only require enough energy to compensate for
losses when finished. Elevators could be run along the streams, and
geostationary installations could be placed along the horizontal top.
[Named after Keith Lofstrom, who did the first detailed calculations on it
in: Lofstrom, Keith H., "The launch loop -- a low cost Earth-to-high orbit
launch system," AIAA Paper 85-1368, 1985 ].
Talk about bullet train!
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