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Day 11 (Friday, 2016-08-19)
Temperature: 35dC (sticky hot)
  • Kyoto Train Museum
  • Image Notes
    Kyoto High Temperatures

    The Cone has developed a healthy aversion to the heat of the day. This morning it decided to stay indoors and watch "Wolf Children". In the afternoon it mustered some courage and ventured a short distance away to the Kyoto Train Museum which opened this year (2016).

    The Cone believes that because Kyoto is is in the central part of the island it gets less of the ocean cooling effect and because it is surounded by mountains the heat gets trapped in the city. Is Kyoto one of the hottest Japanese cities?
    Shinkansen Type 0 - which ran from 1964 to 2008. The first Shinkansen line Tokaido Shinkansen connected Tokyo to Shin-Osaka (new-Osaka) - a distance of 515 km. This line is still in operation and has been designated the most traveled high-speed rail route in the world, with a cumulative ridership of 5.3B passengers since it started. Today's trains operate at a crusing speed of 280kph and take about 2.5 hours to complete the trip.
    Inside cockpit of the Shinkansen Type 0.
    Inside cockpit of the Shinkansen Type 0. These pictures were hard to take as there were an infinite amount of kids running about pulling and pushing any lever they could get hold of.
    1 mile measuring chain. Why oh why would you make it out of something as heavy as metal?
    Model of Disel Train Engine and Transmission. Not shown in the image was the differential was leaking oil.
    Steam Engine departing. This beast is so dirty and smelly.
    Brief Japanese Train History

    Cornelius learned that the first train started operating in 1825 in Britan. It was followed by US, German and Danish operators in quick succession. The first Japanese train came on the scene in 1872. It was so novel that at the start some people took their footwear off before boarding.

    Japan saw rapid developments of its railways - which were helped by nationalizing the train system and standardizing the equipment. A trans Euro-Asian route was established boasting tickets from Tokyo to Berlin or Paris. The line crossed the Korean peninsula and Siberia on its way to Europe.

    In 1949 the Japanese National Railways (JNR - a public corporation) was established. This corportation is the precursor of the Japanese Railways (JR) everyone who goes to Japan knows about. Its main contributions were the push for electrification of most train lines. As a result the Japanese railway system is very clean with few disel engines in operation.

    As means of transportation diversified (increased availability of air travel and automobiles) JNR started on a declining financial path. JNR was deemed unfeasible to save so in 1987 it was broken down into 6 regional passenger railway companies and one freight railway company. These companies are known as The Japan Railways Group (JR) and they are the major railway operators in Japan.
    The steam engine repair shop at the Kyoto Museum - it's still operational.
    A Rotary Converter. 750V DC at 1,300A operated from 1933-1967.
    A Sllicon based rectifier. 1,500V DC at 2,000A operated from 1963 to 1987. For comparison the Shinkansen lines use 25kV AC voltages.
    The railway system in Japan switched from steam to electric bypassing the disel engines. These are the various type of components used to bring electricity to the train engine. The copper wire which carries the electricity is being supported from a steel wire. The big wheel on the left is called a Pulley-Type Automatic Tension Balancer and keeps a tension of 6,000kg (58.8kN) in thw wire.
    These are ceramic insulators.
    Pantograph Collector Actuation. The collector is the electrical equipment that connects to the electric wire above the train and draws electric energy for the electric engine to use.
    This was used at the track control center - but because of very little English descriptive text the Cone couldn't figure out how.
    Track Changing mechanism.
    Dancing in the heat. The local youth seems to tolerate the heat much better than the Cone. Maybe the loose clothing helps. The Umekoji Park where the train museum is located is also where the Kyoto Acquarium is. This appears to be an up and coming area.
    At the end of the day Cornelius headed for dinner at his favorite Aeon mall. There it again checked out the arcade and found a young player showing her grandparents how it's done.
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