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Books about the future of Mobility

. Books about the future of Mobility


The Electric Vehicle and the Burden of History
by David A. Kirsch
The electric vehicle of historian David Kirsch's title is an old technology that seems ever on the verge of making a comeback. In the late 1890s, the electric engine competed with steam- and gasoline-driven engines to become the standard for automobile manufacturers, and it remained competitive for nearly a decade until, in the early 1900s, the internal-combustion engine captured the market. It did so for complex reasons, few of them, in Kirsch's account, having to do with purely technological issues. Enter the "burden of history," a fruitful notion that reminds us that deterministic ideas of why things are the way they are - for example, that the lead-acid battery held insufficient power to carry cars over long distances without recharging, thus ensuring the victory of the more easily replenished internal-combustion engine - are often only half-right, if that. Kirsch urges that those concerned with analyzing the wherefores of the past take into consideration multiple causes, and not always the most apparent ones. The automobile, he continues, is not simply a machine, but "a material embodiment of the dynamic interaction of consumers and producers, private and public institutions, existing and potential capabilities, and prevailing ideas about gender, health, and the environment." In short, the automobile is a system unto itself, and how it came to take its present form--unchanged in many respects for a hundred years--is a story that involves many episodes. Kirsch's account of some of those episodes provides a solid case study for students of technological history, and for those who press for new means of transportation in the new century. - Gregory McNamee


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High Speed Trains - Fast Tracks to the Future
by Torbjorn Flink, Staffan Hulten, John Whitelegg
The Stockholm School of Economics in this book is bringing a collection of papers to as wide an audience as possible.
There is much in this book to interest many different groups of people. Rail enthusuasts will find here arguably the most comprehenisve collection to date of writings on the subject of high speed trains, with a historical perspective on developments in all those countries which have, as it were, gone the high speed track.
Those to whose interest in railways can be added a concern for the general concept of publicly-owned transport infrastructure may well bristle at the thoughts of Mendoza on the role of the train in the burgeoning Spanish economy, or at Hawke's perhaps cursory dismissal of the argument that railways rarely compete for funds with roads on a 'level playing field'. But they will surely find inspiration in Whitelegg and Holzapfel's thought-provoking championship of the cause of local and regional rail services.
Equally, as much as the above may choose to skip some of the more theoretical chapters, it is precisely these which make this collection a work of considerable importance to academics in a variety of disciplines - economists, historians, economic historians and others.
And those whose interests touch the romance of rail travel, or the great buildings which railways have created, will surely delight in the enthusiasm of Richards and MacKenzie and their vision of the railway palaces of the future.
John Whitelegg is Head of Geography at Lancaster University, and a world authority on public transport. Staffan Hulten is Assistant Professor at Stockholm School of Economics, where Torbjorn Flink ia a researcher.

Forward Drive: The Race to Build "Clean" Cars for the Future
by Jim Motavalli, Michael Brian Schiffer
Few consumers have been attracted to "clean" cars - those powered by something other than traditional internal combustion engines - because they aren't satisfied yet with critical factors such as appearance (too odd), cost (too high), dependability (too uncertain), and performance (too limited). The times they are a-changing, however. A host of catalysts, including new legal requirements and shifting public opinion, is finally driving automakers toward relevant alternative technologies that actually date back 160 years. And Jim Motavalli, who travels an unusual professional route as both syndicated auto columnist and environmental reporter, chronicles the buildup and potential payoff in his intriguing book Forward Drive. "The information I came across ... described a personal transportation revolution that was becoming tantalizingly close," he writes. "Here, at last, were vehicles that promised to not only greatly reduce pollution but also to perform better, be more reliable, cruise farther, and last much longer than anything the public had ever seen." Written for those "who'd somehow failed to get their engineering Ph.D.s," it absorbingly examines the history of such vehicles, the impact of gasoline automobiles, the pioneers who already utilize alternative power, the large and small R&D operations, the political and financial forces under which everything operates, and the broader picture of sustainable transportation. - Howard Rothman

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Cities on the Move: A World Bank Urban Transport Strategy Review
by World Bank
Within a generation, the developing world's urban population will increase by 2 billion.. Urban sprawl is likely to increase to the detriment of public transport, reducing accessibility and services for the poor. The World Bank's Urban Transport Strategy Review will prepare for this challenge.

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The Airline Business in the 21st Century
by Rigas Doganis
This book focuses on the major issues that will affect the airline industry as we enter a new millennium. the future development of "open skies", the cutting of labour costs, the virtual airline, global alliances, state aid and the emergence of low cost operators are analysed with a view to how these phenomena influence the options open to airline managers into the new century.
While the early 1990's saw the worst crisis the airline industry had ever known, they were followed by five or six years of high profits as demand boomed and costs were cut. But at the start of the new millennium there is growing concern and uncertainty among airline managers. Higher fuel prices and increased competition, which is pushing down fares, are unddermining profitability. At the same time, the airline business is being buffeted by many new challenges both internal and external. This book focuses on the major issues that will affect the airline industry as we enter a new millennium. It analyzes the key regulatory, operational and managerial developments that will underpin the growth of the international airline business and assess the strategic and policy options open to airline executives. Topics include: the trend towards "open skies"; the impact of e-commerce; global alliances; the challenge of low cost operators; reducing labour costs; privatization of state-owned airlines; and strategies for the 21st century.

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Future Flight: The Next Generation of Aircraft Technology
by William D. Siuru, John D. Busick (Contributor), Bill Siuru
Advances in aerodynamics, propulsions systems, avionics, materials artificial intelligence, and manufacturing techniques will all shape tomorrow's aviation, and this fully illustrated book offers a well-trained telescope to the future of flight.


Code Name Ginger: The Story Behind Segway and Dean Kamen's Quest to Invent a New World
by Steve Kemper
For anyone who has ever wondered what it was like inside Thomas Edison's lab or the Wright Brothers' garage, here is the 21st century equivalent. Brilliant, eccentric inventor Dean Kamen was already a millionaire with an impressive list of medical inventions to his name, but none of them had excited him like his newest world-changer. Extraordinary things were happening inside his New Hampshire laboratory, secret things that few people knew about - until an internet leak led to an international guessing-game about Kamen's mysterious invention.
For eleven months in 2001, the world fantasized about the nature of “IT,” better known by its code name: Ginger. In December 2001, Ginger was unveiled on U.S. television as the Segway Human Transporter, the world’s first self-balancing, electric-powered personal transportation device, described by Kamen as "magic sneakers."

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The Electric Car: Development and Future of Battery, Hybrid and Fuel-Cell Cars (Iee Power & Energy Series, 38)
by Michael H. Westbrook
This book covers the development of electric cars -- from their early days to new hybrid models in production -- together with the very latest technological issues faced by automotive engineers working on electric cars, as well as the key business factors vital for the successful transfer of electric cars into the mass market. Considerable work has gone into electric car and battery development in the last ten years with the prospect of substantial improvements in range and performance in battery cars as well as in hybrids and those using fuel cells. This book comprehensively covers this important subject and will be of particular interest to engineers and managers working in the automotive and transport industries.

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Powering the Future: The Ballard Fuel Cell and the Race to Change the World
by Tom Koppel
Tom Koppel is an award-winning freelance writer. He has contributed feature articles on business, science, history, and travel to national magazines in Canada and the U.S. for nearly twenty years. He has been following the story of the Ballard fuel cell for over ten years, and first wrote about it for the Financial Post Magazine and Reader's Digest. He lives on Salt Spring Island, British Columbia. Powering the Future is his second book.

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Fuel Cell Systems Explained
by James Larminie (Author), Andrew Dicks (Author)
Fuel cell technology is developing at a rapid pace, thanks to the increasing awareness of the need for pollution-free power sources. Moreover, new developments in catalysts and improved reliability have made fuel cells viable candidates in a broad range of applications, from small power stations, to cars, laptop computers and mobile phones. Building on the success of the first edition Fuel Cell Systems Explained presents a balanced introduction to this growing area.

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