In devising a suitable alternative design to aid in solving Sandikhola's transport issues, every facet of the solutions impact on the environment and community must be analysed to ensure the solution best suits the needs of the town.
Two alternative solutions to the vertical transport issue in Sandikhola were devised, A Hot Air Balloon System and a Gravity Ropeway. They were then compared against 4 main criteria to determine which was most suitable to the town. The 4 main criteria were:
• The suitability of the transport solution to the terrain and environment in the hill regions.
• The cost vs. benefit of the solution. Will the solution appeal to the locals, or could you convince a government that your solution is worth investing in?
• The appropriateness of the solution to the social, economic and physical environment.
• The reliability of the transport solution.
Both Designs were scored out of 10 for each criteria which lead to a total score out of 40. The design with the highest score became the Final Solution. The Alternative Conceptual Design Report can be found in Appendix XX
Design 1: Hot air balloon
A Hot Air balloon system could provide a locally sourced, and effective vertical transport option to the people of Sandikhola. A collection of hot air balloons operating on a wire above the tress would also have little impact on the environment.
The Hot Air Balloon system will comprise of a single conventional hot air balloon running each way, following a rope connecting the peak and base of the hill. A pilot will guide the hot air balloons for safety reasons. The hot air balloons used will consist of an envelope, basket and fuel tank. A diagram of a Hot Air Balloon can be seen in Figure (…). The balloons would carry 100% of the goods currently transported by foot to be transported; both up and down the mountain. They will be loaded at specially designed stations built into the mountain, then piloted up or down the mountain, over existing trees to the other station where the goods will be unloaded.
Figue (…) Diagram of A Hot Air Balloon
Design 2: Gravity Goods Ropeways
A gravity ropeway is a cost-effective, easily maintained vertical transport solution. The system would involve a trolley travelling along a ropeway, enabling the villages of Sandikhola to transport goods up and down the hill.
The Gravity Ropeway system is composed of two stations (upper and lower) which support two track ropes. A trolley hangs off each track rope. A haul rope connects the two trolleys via the upper and lower stations. By only the force of gravity the trolley traveling downhill pulls the other trolley up hill via the hauling rope. There is a single breaking system to control the speed of the upper trolley’s dissention to the lower station. No additional energy input or mechanical advantage devices are required to allow the ropeway to work, only gravity is required. A diagram of an existing Gravity Ropeway can be found in Figure XX
Figure (…) Gravity Ropeway Diagram
Comparison and Scoring
Both designs will be scored based on their suitability as a prospective solution to the problem of vertical transport in the village of Sandikhola. The four main criteria that will be considered when scoring the designs are as follows:
1. The suitability of the transport solution to the terrain and environment in the hill regions.
2. The cost vs. benefit of the solution. Will the solution appeal to the locals, or could you convince a government that your solution is worth investing in?
3. The appropriateness of the solution to the social, economic and physical environment.
4. The reliability of the transport solution.
Under each category each design will be given a score out of 10, and the design with the highest score will become the preferred solution design.
We have decided to weight each criteria point equally as they are all as equally important considerations in