Monday, December 26, 2011

China tests 310 mph train

I traveled on the French TGV high speed train at speeds between 100 and 200 mph between Paris and Nice and the Cote D'Azure (French Riviera) with my family in October 2010. So, imagining traveling at 310 mph takes it up another notch. Even traveling to Nice it felt to me sort of like taking off in a passenger jet and just staying on the runway at full takeoff speed and staying there for several hours. The hardest thing to get used to is that you have to look very far away out of the window so you don't get vertigo from the speeds. You have to look about a block away or more so it doesn't feel weird when you look out the window at those speeds because anything closer than one to three blocks away is only a blur while traveling at those speeds. The TGV sounds a lot like the whine of a Prius in electric mode only much louder. But what is interesting is that there are no railroad wheel or track sounds because there aren't any wheels since you are mag-levitated by electricity above the tracks so you don't actually touch the tracks with mag-lev at least vertically.

China tests 500 km/h super high-speed train  

begin quote from above:

BEIJING (Reuters) - China launched a super-rapid test train over the weekend which is capable of travelling 500 kilometers per hour, state media said on Monday, as the country moves ahead with its railway ambitions despite serious problems on its high-speed network.
The train, made by a subsidiary of CSR Corp Ltd, China's largest train maker, is designed to resemble an ancient Chinese sword, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
It "will provide useful reference for current high-speed railway operations," it quoted train expert Shen Zhiyun as saying.
But future Chinese trains will not necessarily run at such high speeds, CSR chairman Zhao Xiaogang told the Beijing Morning News.
"We aims to ensure the safety of trains operation," he said.
China's railway industry has had a tough year, highlighted by a collision between two high-speed trains in July which killed at least 40 people. Construction of new high-speed trains in China has since been a near halt.
In February, the railways minister, Liu Zhijun, a key figure behind the boom in the sector, was dismissed over corruption charges that have not yet been tried in court.
(Reporting by Sabrina Mao and Ben Blanchard; Editing by Yoko Nishikawa)

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