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This Year is Smart Moves!

This year's theme is transportation, using green or efficient transportation. It sounds very interesting and I can't wait to get the project guidelines and the mission instructions!

Research homework on Smartrains...

I enjoyed learning about the ways that trains could be streamlined to create a "green" way to travel. Even now, high speed trains in Japan have an average delay of only 30 seconds. And a freight train can pull one ton of cargo for 423 miles on one gallon of gas. Passenger travel by train produces three to ten times less CO2 than passenger travel by cars and planes. And, one freight train can replace 280 trucks, also reducing emissions and CO2. Maybe we could help make our local railroads more efficient, safer, faster, cleaner, and more profitable. In other words, we could try to make our trains smarter.

Trains are a cool possibility for SmartMoves!

Home Work

After reading the green railroad thing I was very surprised of some of the things on there, like if just 10% of the frieght moved by highway were moved to the rails it woud save over 1 billion gallons of fuel annually and many other things. I thought this site was pretty cool!

History of Sacramento Valley Transportation

I read an article on the history of transportation in the Sacramento Valley.

Some interesting parts of this essay were about the Capitol city wheelmen and other bicyclist groups that rallied to get better roads around Sacramento, which, with there petitions noticed, soon some better roads were set up.

Also, the car drivers rallied for better roads, resulting in a reliable road network. Soon there were even three bridges spanning the American river.

When World War I started, the American government gave $3,000,000 for the production of  JN-4 planes in Sacramento. Later, the many extra planes were converted to civilian use. One man started a business where he would scare ducks out of fields for a fee. He was later ridiculed for dropping grenades at them, which did more damage to the crops than the ducks.

In the years that followed, there were aviation shows held annually, and the popularity of flying increased. So the transportation has developed greatly in our area, and is still developing.

History of Transportation in Sacramento Area

Today I read about the history of transportation in the Sacramento area. I read about things that were really interesting. One interesting thing I read was that in less than 10 years California's transportation system changed from an ox cart economy to one where there were trains and steamships.  Wagon trains, steamboats, railroads, and automobiles were all a part of the history of transportation in the Sacramento area. Without this growth in transportation, the Sacramento area would not have become what it is today.

My Homework!

I enjoyed reading this essay from Sacramento History Online about the Sacramento area's history of transportation. It was very interesting and, I learned some new things. For example, I had no idea that bicycles were so popular in the Sacramento region during the 1880s. They were a relativly inexpensive and efficient way to get around the city. In fact, they were so popular that the government added some new paved roads just for bicycles. Another thing I learned has to do with stagecoaches. Over 80% of stagecoaches were united together as one line under the management of James Birch during 1864. However, there were no quality wagon roads at the time, so he presented a petition to Congress for a road. As one of the largest petions ever, with 75,000 signatures, they got, not one, but three roads. Also, in 1919 with the end of World War I, many of the planes used in the war were no longer needed and became surplus. This helped jumpstart aviation in Sacramento. The planes were used for recreation, entertainment and travel. Farmers also began experimenting with aerial seeding of crops. 

This was a very informative essay and I enjoyed reading it.

Second Homework

After reading the green railroads article, I was surprised to learn that a train can move one ton 830 miles on one gallon of diesel!  Union Pacific is part of the SmartWay Transportation Partnership, in partnership with the EPA.  I noticed that Kent Nakata from the Placer County Air Polution Control Board of Directors was in one of the videos talking about the new Gen-Set engines.  These new engines will be reducing 90% of the particulate matter, with a 70% reduction in fuel.  UP in Roseville has the largest rail yard on the west coast, which could be a good field trip!

Train Transportation

I read an article on how efficient Union Pacific railroads are turning out to be. They use just one gallon of gas to haul one ton 830 miles! Trains are much more ideal than trucks because they are almost four times more fuel-efficient than trucks.

Union Pacific has also studied and become 15% more efficient than in past years and they have saved 58 million gallons of diesel fuel during the past 9 years.

Trains are certainly a good idea due to how little fuel they use and how ECO friendly they seem to be. I am starting to think that trains would be an interesting topic for this year’s project.

Home Work

The transportation article was about how people moved goods around in the late 18th century and early 19th century in the Sacremento region. 

I found it interesting that in less than a decade, California went from a farily basic society, to a complex economy with the steam engine, rail roads, and industry.

I also think it is interesting that as quickly as transportation grew in the first part of the last century, it is growing even faster today.  I look forward to learning more about it.

home work

Our coach Heidi gave us a link to an article on Sacramento transportation history and asked us to write about it. 

What I thought was interesting was that in  1905 there was only 27 cars in Sacramento but in 1910,  only five years later, there where over 700!

Another thing I thought was interesting was that ox-cart wheels were made out of the rounds of a cut off tree stump!

Reading the article gave me lots of ideas for the future.

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