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jpcar

Based on the image above and examination while viewing Jurassic Park, it appears there is no physical connection between truck and track (though there may be).

Is the proposed method of moving the tour vehicles-- having them follow a track that moves them along with electricity-- a viable method of moving a vehicle?


To clarify, what @Shufler realizes in his comment

"I just understood the difference between the JP SUVs and electric trains (and OP's original question) -- that the SUVs don't appear to contact the track, where as subways and other electric trains have physical contact with a "third rail" or wire. – shufler May 24 at 19:50"

is what I was getting at. I am familiar with monorails and how they work. What I was hoping to learn was whether or not a a track could propel a car without (discernible) contact electrically-- which @wbogacz addresses.

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Car-Wash, all I need to say –  TylerShads May 24 '12 at 12:41
    
Don't most car-washes put the car on a track that guides the cars physically, not electrically? –  stevvve May 24 '12 at 13:08
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I don't think the track provided any electricity to the car - it provided data for the car's electronics to follow a pre-arranged course through the park. –  wbogacz May 24 '12 at 14:06
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I just understood the difference between the JP SUVs and electric trains (and OP's original question) -- that the SUVs don't appear to contact the track, where as subways and other electric trains have physical contact with a "third rail" or wire. –  shufler May 24 '12 at 19:50
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up vote 9 down vote accepted

I think the question is whether an autonomous car technology exists. The answer is yes.

The movie displays electronics that depended on communication on a short range of 1-2 ft. The current vision is to include communications to drive cars from 'such techniques as laser, radar, lidar, GPS and computer vision.'

People have been talking about autonomous cars and driverless highways since the 40's (corrected from 70's), and I met people during my job in the 90's who were hired to design such systems.

Also, the technology is independent of the power needed to propel the car. Gasoline/electric power - the technology makes no distinction. I think the movie made the car electric because it could be easily disabled for the plot.

UPDATE: While reviewing the relevant movie section, I hear Samuel Jackson specifically mentions the car batteries, leading me to think the track supplies no energy.

When the kids and the scientists jump out of the car to aid the Tricerotops, the central computer says something to the effect 'Stopping park vehicles...'.

When Nedry (Newmann) sets the power to fail so he can escape, the track data flow fails to the vehicles bringing them to a halt right next to the T-Rex cage. T-Rex is no longer contained by 10k volts.

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