What is Transport?

Movement of humans, animals or goods from one location to another is called transport or transportation.

What are the types of transportation?

Land Transport

Land transport is the process of transport where vehicles (trains, buses, trucks, cars, bicycles, bullock-carts etc.) move on the land.

Water Transport

Water transport is the process of transport where boats or ships move through water bodies such as a sea, ocean, lake, canal or river.

Air Transport

Air transport is the process of transport where aircraft (airplane, helicopters, hot air balloon ship etc.) move through the air.

Different types of Transport

Land Transportation

Land transport covers all land-based transportation of people, goods and services.

Railways - Mode of Land Transport

Roadways - Mode of Land Transport

  • Rail Transport - Passenger trains, Goods trains.
  • Road Transport - Motor vehicles, Animal powered carts, Human powered vehicles.

Water Transportation

It is used to carry heavy goods for longer distances. It is cheaper than road and air ways.

Various Modes of Water Transport

  • Manual boats - Sail boats, Paddle boats, Kayaks etc.
  • Steam boats - Steamers
  • Motor boats - Ferry boats, Power boats
  • Ships -  Passenger ships, Naval ships, Cargo ships
  • Submarines

Air Transportation

Air transport is the fastest method of transport.

Various Modes of Air Transport
Picture Credit: 

  • Passenger aircraft: Airplanes, Helicopters, Gliders, Parachutes etc.
  • Cargo aircraft: Cargo planes, Blimps etc.
  • Space research and defense: Rockets, Missiles etc.

What are the power sources for transport vehicles?

Man-powered transportation

  • Transport of people and/or goods using human muscle power.
  • For example, cycling, rowing, skating, skiing etc.

Animal-powered transportation

  • Animal used for pulling or carrying people and/or goods.
  • For example, bullock-carts, donkey carrying goods etc.

Engine-powered transportation

  • Mechanical machine is used to power the vehicles. Steam engine, petrol or diesel engines are some examples of the engines.
  • For example, Bus, Car, Train, Airplane etc.

Steam Engine

The steam engine was one of the most important inventions of the Industrial Revolution. Steam engines were used in all sorts of applications including factories, mines, train engine, and steamboats.

Steam engine also revolutionized the transportation.

Working principle of steam engine

  • Generation of heat by burning fuel i.e. coal.
  • Heat energy is used to make steam from water.
  • Pressure is created within the steam and steam releases the pressure by doing work.
  • This work is used to perform activities as per the applications.
This whole set up is called steam engine.

Steam Engine as the power source for Rail Transport

Invention of Steam engine

  • Thomas Savery from Spain developed first working steam engine in 1698. It was not efficient and practically usable.

  • Thomas Newcomen from Britain developed a practically usable steam engine in 1711. It was better than Thomas Savery engine.

  • James Watt from Scotland repaired and designed a improved steam engine in 1769. It was efficient steam engine which became very famous and was used widely in various industries, ships, locomotives of that time.

History of Transport

Since the beginning humans have been travelling in search of food, water, shelter, for survival, for trading etc. When there were no means of transportation, they walked. Walking on bare foot made their journeys difficult and slow.

When learnt to create foot coverings (shoes), they walked with ease. They had to carry their loads themselves. So their journeys were still slow and difficult.

Representation of early humans movements

With the time humans kept on finding the ways to make their travel easier and faster.

Using the animals for the transportation

As humans learnt to tame the animals. They domesticated the animals and started using them for transportation. They rode on their back and/or kept the loads on them. Horses, donkeys, Oxen etc were used for this purpose.

Invention of Wheel

  • Wheel was invented about 5500 years ago.
  • One of the most important invention of human history.
  • With the time, people kept on improving the wheel designs.
  • Carts were also made and wheels were attached to them.
  • These carts were pulled by the people or animals.
  • Revolutionized the transport.

With the time, designs of wheel and carts were improved. Transportation became faster and easier.

Invention of Boats

Since the stone age, primitive boats were developed to travel through the water. Boats were also used for fishing. So water transport is the oldest way to transport.

Oldest boat found in Netherlands. It is 10,000 years old.

With the time, designs of boats were improved. Transportation became faster and easier.

Invention of aircraft

First hot air balloon was invented by Montgolfier brothers in 1783.
First sustained, controlled and powered heavier-than-air airplane was invented by the Wright brothers in 1903. This revolutionary aircraft was called the Wright Flyer.

Wright Flyer.

All these inventions were proved to be the base for all the technological advancement in the transportation.