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Piggyback transportation is transportation of goods where one transportation unit is carried on the back of something else - it is a specialised form of intermodal transportation and of combined transport.
When loaded trucks are carried on railway wagons, with facilities to complete the journey by road by rail-road transfer the train service is referred to as a rolling road, or rolling highway. A related transportation method is the rail transport of semi-trailers, without road tractors, sometimes referred to as 'Trailer on Flatcar' (TOFC).
It is also possible to carry a railway wagon of one track gauge on a flat railway wagon (transporter wagon or rollbock) of another gauge; indeed, whole trains of one gauge can be carried on a train of flat wagons of another gauge as was done temporarily in Australia for about a year around 1955 between Telford and Port Augusta.
Small ships of all kinds can be piggybacked on larger ships. Examples include lifeboats, landing craft, minesweepers on motherships. Midget submarines on big submarines such as used for 1942 Japanese submarine attack on Sydney.
The 1930s British Short Mayo Composite, in which a smaller floatplane aircraft, the four-engined "Mercury", was carried aloft on the back of a larger four-engined flying boat named "Maia"; this enabled the Mercury to achieve a greater range than would have been possible had it taken off under its own power. In space transportation systems a satellite on the top of a launcher assembly is said to be "piggybacked" on the launcher.
The metal caterpillar treads of a tank wear out quickly when travelling long distances on ordinary roads. It is therefore necessary to provide tank transporters, which have rubber tires, to the battlefield.
- Pearlman, Robert Z. (7 September 2012). "Shuttle Endeavour to get one last piggyback ride across US". MSNBC. Retrieved 24 October 2012.
- Harper, Douglas. "piggyback". Online Etymology Dictionary. Retrieved 24 October 2012.
- THE GEOGRAPHY OF TRANSPORT SYSTEMS
- Trove - Pick-a-back operation solves gauge-break problem, 1955 / Adelaide Advertiser
- Uniform Eailway Gauge, E. Harding, Lothian Publishing Co., 1958
- [Alexander J.] (2011). A Great Leap Forward: 1930s Depression and U.S. Economic Growth. New Haven, London: Yale University Press. p. 114. ISBN 978-0-300-15109-1
- "Mine-Sweepers By "Piggyback"", The Mercury (Hobart), 5 June 1951: 5 More than one of
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