• Natural resources, economic activities, and markets are rarely all found in same location. Links between producing and consuming centres are established by transportation, communication, and trade.
• mass manufacturing and exchange system is intricate. Each region generates products that are most suited to it. Transportation and communication are essential for trade or exchange of such items. Similarly, efficient transportation, communications, and trade are necessary for high living standards and quality of life.
• Transportation is a facility or service that transports people and things from one location to another utilising humans, animals, & various types of vehicles. Loading, unloading, and delivery are all handled by this well-organized service business.
Modes of transport
• Land, water, air, & pipelines are primary routes of transport. These are used for both inter-regional and intra-regional transportation, and each [with exception of pipelines] transports both passengers and products.
• A transport network is a pattern made up of several locations [nodes] connected by a series of routes [links].
• This involves transportation of products and services over lands, such as by road and rail. Humans were utilised as carriers in early times, such as in palanquin [palki or doli], but later pack animals such as mules, horses, & camels were used.
• In North America, dogs & reindeer were used. Bullocks were used to pull carts in India. revolution occurred after advent of steam engine in 18th century, which paved way for railways and roadways.
• Pipelines, ropeways, & cableways are some of new land transportation options. Rope and cableways are commonly found on steep mountain slopes and mines where road construction is not feasible.
• This is most cost-effective mode of transportation for short distances and is gaining popularity in freight transport because of its door-to-door service. Due to their simple design, metalled roads are functional in all seasons, whereas unmetalled roads are not.
• Heavy rains and flooding have rendered both roads impassable. Road quality, building, & maintenance are better in industrialised countries than in developing countries since it necessitates a significant investment.
• world’s entire motorable road length is just about 15 million kilometres, with North America accounting for 33% of that. Although, in comparison to Western Europe, North America had largest number of automobiles and highest road density.
• total length of roads per hundred square kilometres of an area is called road density. It refers to traffic on roads that have increased dramatically in recent years. As road network cannot cope with demands of traffic, so congestion occurs.
• They are paved roadways that connect distant locations and allow for unrestricted vehicular mobility. There are separate traffic lanes, bridges, flyovers, & dual carriage ways on these 80 m wide roads.
• There is a vast network of roadways across North America. Pacific and Atlantic coasts are connected by Trans-Canadian highway, which connects Vancouver to Newfoundland, and Alaskan route connects Edmonton to Anchorage.
• In Australia, Stuart highway connects Darwin, Melbourne, and Alice Springs. European highway system is well-developed. For Russia, Moscow-Vladivostok route is crucial. In China, highways crisscross country.
• Earlier longest roadway in India is National Highway No. 7 [NH7], which connects Varanasi and Kanyakumari. [golden quadrilateral, often called super highway, is now being built.] National Highway 44 is now India’s longest highway. It runs between Srinagar and Kanyakumari. National Highway 44 replaces NH-7. Algiers is connected to Guinea in north, and Cairo is connected to Capetown in south.
• These are roads laid along international boundaries. These roads help in transport of goods to border areas and military camps.
• Railways are ideally suited for long-distance transportation of large cargo and passengers. Railways connect highly industrialised areas, urbanised regions, and mineral-rich areas to transport ores, grains, lumber, & machinery.
• railway network is dense on all continents, with Europe having highest density. Africa’s, Asia’s, & South America’s railway networks connect mineral-rich and fertile areas and were built primarily to exploit natural resources.
• A trans-continental railway line is a railway line that runs across continent and connects its two ends. They’re built for a variety of reasons, both economic and political. most important of these are as follows:
(1) Trans-Canadian Railway: This is a 7050 km long railway in Canada that connects Halifax in east to Vancouver in west. It was built in 1886. It runs across industrial sector, connecting Prairie wheat belt to coniferous forest area, and is hence regarded as Canada’s economic artery. main exports on this route are wheat and meat.
(2) Trans-Siberian Railway: This is world’s longest railway and is located in Russia. It goes from St. Petersburg in west to Vladivostok in east, passing through Moscow, Irkutsk, Chita, & other cities along way. It connects vital agro and fur centres, as well as rail linkages to Asia’s major cities.
(3) Union and Pacific Railway: This rail line runs from New York on Atlantic coast to San Francisco on Pacific coast, stopping in Cleveland, Chicago, Omaha, Evans, Ogden, & Sacramento along way. Ores, grain, paper, chemicals, and machinery are most valuable exports on this route.
(4) Australian Trans-Continental Railway:
This rail line connects Perth on west coast to Sydney on east coast, travelling through Kalgoorlie Broken Hill and Port Augusta. Another North-South line connects Adelaide and Alice Springs, with Darwin-Birdum link to be added later.
(5) Orient Express: From Paris to Istanbul, this line passes through Strasbourg, Munich, Vienna, Budapest, & Belgrade. It has cut 10-day voyage down to just four days. main exports on this rail route are cheese, wine, bacon, grains, fruits, & machinery.
• This is quickest mode of transportation, but it is most expensive. Air travel has revolutionised connectivity in hostile deserts, mountainous regions, and snowy regions where other modes of transportation are unavailable. Air transport is more developed in highly industrialised countries due to high building and maintenance costs. Supersonic planes travel large distances in a short amount of time.
Inter-Continental Air Routes
• United States controls 60% of world’s airways. Nodal sites where air lines intersect or radiate to all continents are important cities. Africa, Russia’s Asiatic region, and South America lack air services, as these have a smaller population, smaller landmass, and low economic growth.
• Water, petroleum, natural gas, and liquefied coal are all transported in this manner. In New Zealand, milk is delivered through pipeline. United States has a large pipeline network. Big Inch is a wellknown pipeline in United States that distributes petroleum from Gulf of Mexico oil wells to NorthEastern states. Pipelines connect oil wells to refineries in Europe, Russia, West Asia, and India.
• It is most cost-effective mode of transportation because there are no construction costs and very little maintenance costs. connecting of oceans has allowed for more navigation with ships of all sizes. Sea routes and inland waterways are two types of waterways:
Seas and oceans provide a smooth highway that may be travelled in all directions and requires no maintenance. Modern passenger and freight ships use a variety of navigational aids. following are major marine routes:
(1) North Atlantic Sea Route: It connects northeastern United States and northern Europe. This is called Big Trunk route because it is busiest in globe.
(2) Mediterranean-Indian Ocean Sea Route: This route connects Western Europe with West Africa, South Africa, Southeast Asia, Australia, and New Zealand, all of which are industrialised. It transports natural resources like gold, diamonds, copper, tin, groundnut, oil palm, coffee, & fruits.
(3) North Pacific Sea Route: This route connects ports of North America’s west coast with those of Asia. These are American cities of Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, as well as Asian cities of Yokohama, Kobe, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Manila, & Singapore.
(4) Cape of Good Hope Sea Route: This route connects West Europe and West African countries with South American countries such as Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay. Because countries along this route have similar products and resources, there is less traffic on this route.
(5) South Pacific Sea Route: This route connects Western Europe and North America with Australia, New Zealand, and Pacific Islands via Panama Canal, and it connects Hong Kong, Philippines, and Indonesia. Sydney is 12000 kilometres away from Panama. On this route, Honolulu is a significant port.
Coastal Shipping: Coastal shipping is a practical means of transportation for countries with lengthy coasts, such as United States, China, & India. This form of shipping can help to relieve traffic congestion on land.
There are two main canals that serve as gateways of commerce for both Eastern and Western worlds. They are:
• Suez Canal: This is a man-made canal that connects Mediterranean Sea to Red Sea. It was built in 1869. This is 160 kilometres long and 11 to 15 metres deep, with no locks, and sea water freely flows through it.
• Panama Canal: This is a man-made canal that connects Atlantic and Pacific oceans. It’s 72 kilometres long, with a 12-kilometer section of deep cutting and six locks. By sea, it cuts distance between New York and San Francisco in half.
• Inland waterways for commercial and passenger transit include rivers, canals, lakes, & coastal locations. Navigability, water flow, and transportation technology all play a role in development of inland waterways. following are important inland waterways:
(1) Rhine Waterways: This waterway connects Switzerland, Germany, France, Belgium, & Netherlands’ industrial sectors to North Atlantic sea routes. Rhine River runs through both Germany and Netherlands. It passes through a rich coalfield, and Dusseldorf is a major port in area. It is busiest waterway on planet. Every year, around 20,000 ocean-going ships and 2,00,000 inland vessels pass through these rivers.
(2) Volga Waterway: Volga is one of Russia’s most developed waterways. It drains into Caspian Sea and is navigable for up to 11,200 kilometres. Volga-Moscow canal and Volga-Don canal connect it to Moscow region and Black Sea, respectively.
(3) Danube Waterway: In Black Forest, Danube River emerges, navigable until Taurna Severin. Wheat, maize, timber, & machinery are among most common exports.
(4) Great Lakes-St Lawrence Seaway: Great Lakes, along with St. Lawrence River’s estuary, form a North American waterway. On this route, Duluth & Buffalo are two important ports.
(5) Mississippi Waterways: MississippiOhio waterway links interior part of USA with Gulf of Mexico in South. Large steamers can move upto Minneapolis.
• Long-distance communication by telegraph and telephone is essential. American Telegraph and Telephone Company [AT&T] had a monopoly in mid-19th century. Cell phones have become more important in developing countries for rural connectivity.
• Optical Fibre Cables [OFC] are outcome of recent technological advancements. They enable transmission of massive amounts of data that are nearly error-free. Telecommunications and computers have now fused to build integrated networks called Internet.
Satellite Communication in India
• In order to improve communication and connectivity, artificial satellites are launched into Earth’s orbit. It is satellite communication, which has reduced cost per unit of communication as well as time it takes to communicate.
• India produced and launched its own satellites, Aryabhatta on April 19, 1979, Bhaskar-I in 1979, and Rohini in 1980. Long-distance communication and weather forecasting are carried out using Bhaskar, Challenger, and INSAT-IB satellites.
• It is latest technology in which there is instant connectivity by accessing electronic computerised space. This is known as cyberspace or Internet and is encompassed by World Wide Web [www].
• Majority of Internet users are in USA, UK, Germany, Japan, China & India. social and economic space has expanded through e-mail, e-commerce, e-learning and e-governance.