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The system at Oakland International Airport
The Birmingham Airport system, showing how it is built on the old Maglev guideway

The Cable Liner and Cable Liner Shuttle is a range of automated people mover (APM) products designed by Doppelmayr Cable Car for use at airports, in city centers, intermodal passenger transport connections, park and ride facilities, campuses, resorts and amusement parks.

The design is notable for superseding the maglev transport system at Birmingham International Airport which was, at the time, the world’s only commercial maglev system. The technology was used for the new "AirRail Link" on the existing maglev guideway to replace the previous system and temporary bus-service shuttle that had been operating in the meantime.[1]


System featuresEdit

The underside of the guideway, showing the cable propulsion system
The guideway of the Venice People Mover

The automated people mover (APM) systems are based on cable-propelled technology. Distances up to 4 km (2.5 mi) and a peak passenger flow of up to 7,000 pphpd (people per hour per direction) are possible.[2]

In a cable-propelled APM system, a central station powers the system. A fixed grip assembly connects the train to the cable.[3] The cable propels, accelerates, and decelerates the train.[3] The train has no on-board drive engines, gearboxes or brakes.

The control room

Because the system is automated, there are no drivers, conductors or on-board operators. The system operation is monitored from a central control room. Remote equipment diagnosis, by means of a telecommunication link, is possible.[4]

The evacuation system is based on an independent stationary diesel emergency drive that would pull a stranded train back to the station, eliminating the need for an emergency walkway. Trains like these can be also used for different purposes, such as moving trailers and barge loaders.[citation needed]

Train vehiclesEdit

The interior of one of the Toronto Link vehicles

The train's drive machinery is isolated from the train environment, therefore noise levels along the track and in the station platforms are very low and there are no emissions.

The trains are bidirectional. The car is a self-supporting lightweight design with extruded aluminium box-type profile sections. The integral monocoque structure is bolted and riveted and joint connections are aluminium castings. The aluminium sections are made of high-grade, corrosion-resistant alloy.[5] The undercarriage supports are integrated into the car body and take the form of cavity-sealed tubular steel frames. The design is torsion-free. The vehicle interior is predominantly aluminium, with no heat release.[5]


The Mandalay Bay train

The APM uses a self-supporting steel guideway. It is a light steel guideway, which is possible because of the use of lighter trains. The track consists of an I-beam which forms the running and guiding surface.[6] The guideway superstructure is a steel framework construction. The guideway does not require heating in harsh winter conditions.[6] Steel adapters between the steel truss guideway and the concrete columns allow height adjustments to compensate for ground settlements.[7] The track can span more than 67 m (220 ft).

Because the guideway superstructure is a steel framework construction and do not have a solid track base, platform screen doors are used at stations on the system.


There are three main system configurations in use.

Single and Double Shuttle systemEdit

The Mexico City Airport system

The Single Shuttle system is the simplest configuration, with one train operating in both directions on one guideway track.[8]

The Double Shuttle system configuration is very similar, featuring two independent trains operating side by side on a double guideway track, each with its own haul rope and drive machinery. This system increases reliability, because if one shuttle system fails or is closed for maintenance, the other system may continue to operate.[8] This configuration is designed for system lengths up to 3 km (1.8 mi) and may have several intermediate stations.[8]

The frequency and passenger capacity of both shuttle systems depends largely on the length of the system, and the number of intermediate stations. The passenger capacity additionally depends on the capacity of the train.

Bypass systemEdit

The underside of a train

In this system, only one guideway enters each end station, but movable switches direct trains onto dual tracks between stations so they can pass one another en route.[8] The bypass must be located approximately in the middle of two terminal end stations, and can form part of an intermediate station. This configuration is comparable to the Double Shuttle system in terms of capacity and frequency (headway). Either each train has its own haul rope or both trains are attached to the same haul rope depending on the application requirements(station configuration, system length, etc.).[8]

Pinched Loop systemEdit

This system creates a circular train flow where more than one train moves in the same direction. The principle of this system is based on several rope loops which adjoin and overlap each other in the stations. Every haul rope loop is supplied with its own drive and return machinery.[8] In every station each vehicle of the train has to be disconnected from the current haul rope to the next haul rope in order to continue the circular and synchronized train flow. The haul rope loop change may occur only when all the trains are positioned at the standard stop position in the stations and are standstill and will be carried out during boarding/alighting of the passengers.[8] Switches installed at the end stations will guide the train from one lane of the double lane track over to a single guideway in the end stations. During the station stop the switch will be repositioned that the train can leave the station at the other lane of the double lane track. For the functionality of the Pinched Loop concept the stations spans have to be approximately equidistant from each other.[8]


Hamad International Airport Suttle

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Birmingham International Airport People Mover". Arup. Archived from the original on 2007-11-29. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
  2. ^ DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car (2008). Company Presentation: Fully Automated Cable-Propelled APM Systems. DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car GmbH. p. 13.
  3. ^ a b "System Features". Archived from the original on 2008-09-19. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
  4. ^ DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car (2008). Automated People Mover (APM): Planner's guide. DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car GmbH. p. 39.
  5. ^ a b DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car (2008). Automated People Mover (APM): Planner's Guide. DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car GmbH. p. 45.
  6. ^ a b DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car (2008). Automated People Mover (APM): Planner's guide. DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car GmbH. p. 35.
  7. ^ DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car (2008). References. DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car GmbH. p. 8.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h "Configurations". DCC Doppelmayr Cable Car. Archived from the original on 2008-09-19. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
  9. ^ "Doppelmayr Cable Liner at Moscow airport serves the World Cup" (Press release). Doppelmayr Group. 2018-06-25. Retrieved 2018-07-22.

External linksEdit