Tokyo (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A test conducted by the Central Japan Railway in the province of Yamanashi clocked the fastest speed ever reached by a train. A magnetic levitation vehicle was launched at 603 km / h, beating the previous record - set by the same railway company last week - of 590 km / h.
The new tests of JR Central - 12 years after the historic event of 2003, when one of their trains reached 581 km / h – are in lead up to the sales of the new trains projected for 2027. The first railway that it will be ready to accommodate the new high-speed trains in Japan will be the Tokyo-Nagoya, which is already under construction and will cost about $ 47 billion. The distance between the two cities, 286 km, will be covered in 40 minutes.
The Japanese government, along with the JR Central, is trying to sell its trains abroad, and the most attractive market is the US. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the government could finance the JR Central to enable it to provide the trains for the Washington-Baltimore route.
Magnetic levitation trains (Maglevs) work thanks to a magnetic force which allows them to "hover" above the ground, eliminating the friction caused between the steel of the wheels and the rails. While magnetic trains start off on wheels, once they reach a speed high enough to allow the magnets to spring into action, the carriages lift off from the tracks.
Worldwide, there are already two functional magnetic lines. In Shanghai trains built thanks to the collaboration between Siemens and ThyssenKrupp AG bring passengers from the Pudong International Airport to the city's financial district at 431 km / h. A 9km low speed route (100 km / h) is also active in Nagoya since 2005.