Rails: Older and Bigger Than You Thought
Before diesel or electric, before even the steam engine, the predecessor of our modern railways was built in ancient Greece. In roughly 600 B.C. deep grooves were carved directly into limestone to keep carts ‘tracked’ in place while carrying boats across the Corinthian Isthmus; these were pulled by men and animals for over 600 years. Since then throughout the world with heavier loads came the necessity of stronger materials for the rails, better engineering for the carts, wheels, and axles, and with the advent of Steam, finally a better engine. 250 years after the first modern railways, the Rail is still one of the world’s most trusted and reliable transport systems, still being improved, still the most energy-efficient, and still growing - and IPS is proud to be a part and supporter of that history. In North America (2011) just under 1.5 MILLION railcars moved 2.5 BILLION tons of cargo – 42% of all intercity freight – and we are here to keep it moving!