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Coaster Train Tech..How is it Powered?


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I had a question related to coaster trains that may make me sound like a member of the GP, but here goes.

 

How exactly are the tech in coaster trains powered.

 

For example, how do they power Rockit's sound system, lights, and touch screens. How is the powered stored, and recharged etc.

 

All these sound systems and cameras that record onride need some kind of power source....

 

I know how the technology works, I just have no idea HOW power is routed into the cars themselves and how it is recharged...

 

Anyone have an answer?

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Drachen Fire, which had the lights alongside the cars themselves, had a battery pack that was mounted to the end of the #7 car- and which had to be plugged in at the end of each night to keep charged. It worked- sort of- as the circuits often had some 'issues' with the cords not connecting right.

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They don't provide a ton of information, but here's the company that did the lighting/sound/computer work for Rip, Ride, Rockit:

 

http://www.showsys.us/projects/featuredRockit.html

 

The short answer is that the train has several sliding electrical contact that charge the ride as it moves through the station. The train has enough contact with the chargers while it's in the station to sufficiently charge the train to last through the course of the ride. I know that's probably not the technical answer you want, but it's a start...

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If I'm not mistaken the B&M flyers, and floorless Dive coasters have a similar bus bar system that provides power to the trains in the station to operate the ride restraints instead of the typical spring loaded ratcheted style restraints. I could be wrong about that but I think on the flyers the supplied power operates the restraints as well as the locking mechinism for the trains after they have been raised into position.

 

In the lower left corner of this picture of the flyer trains on Tatsu you can see the "bus bar" type connector mounted on the train

 

And in this picture of Sheikra's station you can see what the "bus bar" type connector attaches to in the station to supply power to the trains (he vertical rectangular pieces with the gray attachment on top of it).

 

I got both of those pictures from RCDB.

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AFIK the dive machines use standard ratcheting restraints so there's no need for an onboard power supply for that.Since the flyers use locking pins on the restraints there is a need for an onboard power system to keep the pins in place during the ride.

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AFIK the dive machines use standard ratcheting restraints so there's no need for an onboard power supply for that.Since the flyers use locking pins on the restraints there is a need for an onboard power system to keep the pins in place during the ride.

 

On the Dive machines what unlocks the restraints in the station? I've never noticed any other connection to the train in the station other than that powered buss bar connector. I was under the impression just from observation that the power from the bus bar unlocks the traditional ratcheting restraints while in the station and they are otherwise always locked, similar to how a traditional train is always locked until a bar in the station is raised and the spring mechanism in the ratchet is released. So there may not actually be an actual onboard power supply that is constantly powered throughout the course of the ride but there is a device onboard that unlocks only when power is supplied to it while in the station.

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B&M's "standard" (invert, hyper) trains have the electrical contact connectors so the ride computer will not allow the train to dispatch unless all restraints are lowered to the correct position. Flyers use this same principal however there's more systems being monitored than just the restraints. The locking mechanisms that lock the train into the flight position are also monitored as well as vest/belt locking system.

In the images below you see the amount of sensors and electrical connections that are inside of a B&M flyer train.

 

 

Source: Towers Almanac

 

In regards to on-board-audio, in addition to the trains being charged overnight in their maintenance bays, most loading platforms have electrical bus bars that charge the train while it's loading/unloading.

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AFIK the dive machines use standard ratcheting restraints so there's no need for an onboard power supply for that.Since the flyers use locking pins on the restraints there is a need for an onboard power system to keep the pins in place during the ride.

 

That seems like a weird and unsafe way to do it. From what I've from some flyers is that the pin that holds the seats in flying position is screwed into place by a motor that receives power from the station. As soon as the train leaves, the motor cannot retract the pin and since the only force acting on the pin is downward (the weight of the seats), it will never go anywhere.

 

If you need a constant power to keep the thing in place then you're going to have a lot problems when the electronics fail.

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