Trams without overhead wires begin trials in Nanjing


Nanjing has built a 7.8km tram line from a metro station to its Olympic Stadium East, and trials began on 2 August. The line uses lithium-ore batteries that allow for 90 per cent of the route to be free of overhead electricity wires (i.e. catenary free).

Instead, tram batteries are recharged using ‘pantographs’ at the various tram terminals.

A second 9.4km tram line is under construction.

Such a solution could overcome one objection against trams in George Town – that overhead wires would mar the heritage setting of the inner city.

Perhaps Penang should check out this largely wire-free system for the inner city and the proposed airport-to-Komtar route.

Meanwhile, the Gold Coast tram system in Australia, which began on 20 July, has been deemed to be “an early success” and possibly a model for Canberra’s planners. Over 18000 people per day were using the system by the end of August, compared to the forecast of 25000 per day after two years.

Thanks to blog visitor Ric Francis for the alerts.

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  1. EVERY gomen, including the most “democratic” ones, cracks down brutally on serious protest. Serious means issues that really matter, “sensitive,” e.g. threat to really big money-making.

  2. Anil

    Could you explore the impact of the 20 sen increase in Ron 95 and diesel to rakyat?
    Do you think prices of things will increase in tandem, between now and GST implementation?

    Also, why is there no reduction in government’s subsidy to IPPs?

  3. Details are sketchy about cost. Manufacturer says it cost “about the same” but some say it cost 30% more. Maintenance cost also sketchy because Li-battery need to be replaced at some point and costly.. Its not likely it will cost the same. The promise seems to be the Supercapicator technology that has more adoption even in China. Cost of Supercapacitor is expected to fall making it affordable eventually, so the promise is there..

  4. Sometime the actions of the leaders may look very repressive but that may be needed for the benefits of the people. Just like all parents they have to decide what kind of milk powder their child must take also the child is too young to decide why is best for themselves, do you consider the actions of their parents too oppressive or the behaviour of a communist.
    Will China be what they are to day if what they have done for their country thus far and sure in the process the people in authority inadvertently will become corrupted. But in China the same is happening but a lot of them are being indicted and most of them are sent to the jail or gallows. But this is not happening in Malaysia when corruption is so rampant in Malaysia and only occasionally a unfortunately a scapegoat is indicted just to show they do not condone corruption. Most of these scapegoats are very lightly sentenced and some of them will just have to spend a year or two in jail, compare to China these corrupted officials are sentenced to death or to prison for the rest of their lives !

  5. What is happening like in Thailand before the coup and now in Hong Kong and our country is because the leaders have been too lenient with these opposition who have been misled by the US and the West of the so call democracy and freedom of expression. With the army coup and martial law in place in Thailand everything is now peaceful and back to normal. When the ISA was repealed what we see is rally, rally occupying the road and public properties with disregards for law and order. And it is happening now in Hong Kong when the leaders are too lenient. The Hong Kongite better disperse before the People Liberation Army come in, to which I will support fully for their intervention to bring law and law to the state which have enjoyed peace and prosperity for the past decades.

    Patience has its limits and the opposition should not take for granted their rights, freedom or freedom of expression as espoused by the US and Western Nation. Look at Ukraine and see how a democratically elected govt that favour the Russian was brought down with a new govt undemocratically that is now aligned to the US and the West. And the West say it is a good govt and and what the turmoil which it is experiencing now is due to the so call Western democracy.

    Our govt is doing the right thing in arresting some of the opposition for sedition. They should be thankful that the ISA has been repealed. At least with the Sedition Act, they still have their rights to fight their innocence in the court of law. To me it was a mistake by the govt to repeal the ISA. The current action by the govt is appropriate.

    Let put it this way and see whether democracy is fair or not. An electorate with votes of say 50 thousand. So if a candidate has 25,010 votes, that mean he would be the adun with a 10 votes majorities. What about the voice of the 24,990 voters. By right the winner should only have half representation with the other half by the loser. Before you fight too much for the democracy as espoused by the West, think first. Democracy may not always be good.

    Look at China now, although it did not have the West type of democracy, it is doing well and good with the people enjoying peace, prosperity and advancing by leap and bound as depicted in the video. In a way, China also has democracy but somewhat different. You join the Communist and start your way up, nationally or within the district or state.

    • Protests and rallies were held long before the ISA was repealed.

      Also, there is such a thing as proportional representation in a democracy.

  6. May be it is time for the CM to go to China and emulate what they are doing. Imagine just a short few decades ago it is just the opposite and just at China to day, even though a communist country, the entire world, especially Malaysia, is full of envy for their innovations and ideas. I was there just a couple of years ago and oh boy, you have to be there to believe what you see. Many big cities in the world are giving me the impression that they are only big cities 30 years ago. I now wish that I had immigrated back to China, as advocated by AI and all the Umno dorkys.

  7. Thanks for showing us this video Anil. What a beauty…gliding along a carpet of green grass. Can see such a tram moving to/from Batu Ferringhi to Georgetown.

    The state government should ensure that modern public transport systems are paid for by the property developers. After all by building highly dense structures they distort the movement of people.

    • Yes, who needs cars if we have an efficient network of trams/light rail like this? But what a pity the Penang Transport Masterplan intends to spend RM17bn on new highways vs only RM10bn for public transport.

      • Unfortunately most Malaysians are thrilled to own and drive their own cars. Just look at the variety of automobile magazines at newsstands. If there is less traffic on the road, then the entire auto industry in Malaysia will suffer from petrol stations to car repair workshops to car accessories to car wash… With Proton Iriz and Perodua Axia entering the fray, you can count on more young people buying a personal car for themselves. Sigh!

      • Ron95 price up 20 sen per litre. Hardship will follow for rakyat in the 6-month prelude to GST.
        I do not see any improvement to public transportation.

      • Ah Niu’s lucky cow number = 3602?
        Maybe he has to pay huge sum (like what Sanjeevan did) to get it on his brand new eco-friendly bullock car 🙂 🙂 🙂


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