14 December 2006
London Underground overheating
This will be my first blog post from the PDA and as I type this I am on a very warm London underground in the middle of December. I can well believe the horror stories of overheating in the summer, especially during rush hour and three trainloads of people queuing ahead of you before you can get on a train,
The problem is caused by hotter air in the Tube failing to rise (as hot air does) quickly enough, coupled with insufficient cooler air from outside replacing it, and insufficient air circulation generally, especially within the trains when the doors are closed. I offer the following as a possible solution and welcome comments on it.
1. Have a system which derives at least part of its power from solar energy.
2. Pump cooler air from outside (possibly augmented by air conditioning) into the gaps between stations such that it flows along the lines, pushed by the trains, into stations. Said air could be sucked in from the street level drainage system.
3. Complete the air cycle by using fans to suck the air out of stations by installing such vans in escalator shafts.
4. Dramatically improve the circulation in trains by having air scoops at the front of the train (where there is high pressure) and feeding this into each carraige separately via units in the carriage ceiling - there is currently a fair bit of spare headroom there that could be put to better use.
5. Install ceiling fans with mesh guards in carriages.
My 2p worth anyway, Ken Livingston are you listening?