Westinghouse Quick-action triple valve

Westinghouse Quick-action triple valve

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Credit: SHEILA TERRY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Cross-section diagram of the Westinghouse quick-action triple valve used in the fail-safe train air brake. Early train brakes were hand operated and largely ineffective, even with the lower speed of trains of those days. To achieve higher and safe speeds, the American inventor George Westinghouse brought out the straight air brake in 1869. Unfortunately, if a hose burst or the train broke in two the brakes on the entire train became useless. The plain automatic air brake of 1873.included a triple valve and an auxiliary reservoir under each vehicle gave independent braking power and the automatic application of the brakes on the whole train, but the problem of uneven braking remained. The quick-action triple valve of 1887, illustrated here, overcame this problem.

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Keywords: 19th c, accident, air brake, automatic air brake, auxiliary reservoir, carriage, collide, collision, components, cross-section drawing. history of technology, engineering, fail-safe, locomotive, quick-action triple-valve, railway, steam train, tender, trains, westinghouse

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