A ultra-high-speed maglev train running at a cruise speed of 1,000 km/h could soon begin to operate in China. The new project experimental will be tested in Harbin, the capital of Heilongjiang province in northeastern China. The new train is specter to be twice as fast as the Shanghai maglev train (with a top speed of 460 km/h).
China has the longest high-speed line on the planet (from Beijing to Guangzhou-Canton, 2,300 km), the highest (the bullet train to Tibet, at an altitude of 5,000 meters) and has in the pipeline the train that intends to break all records: a bullet train that could reach 620 km/h (620 mph).
Construction of the trial route will be a breakthrough in the field.Zheng Bin, President of World Artery
Maglev trains use a system of magnets to float above the track to avoid the problem of friction. Maglev trains are also interesting because there are no moving parts besides the train itself. This means that these trains are not only faster than conventional trains, but also quieter. In 2015, an L0 Maglev series train from Japan broke the record for the “world’s fastest manned train” by achieving a record of 370 mph. That same month, it ran again and set a new record of 375 mph.
World Artery, a Chinese firm involved in the realizing the mission, told news outlet Global Times that the project would not only improve the infrastructure in the province, but also offer a boost to tourism. “Construction of the trial route will be a breakthrough in the field,” Zheng Bin, President of World Artery, told Global Times. “It is also a great leap in technology in translating the concept into reality.”
According to Interesting Engineering magazine, such high speeds could present a number of challenges, one of them being the passengers safety. There is also the cost, as the construction of maglev tracks, stations, and necessary infrastructure demands a lot of capital.
The new project uses technology in low-vacuum pipelines. This is the most important part of the program, allowing the train to achieve high speeds at an affordable cost without compromising on safety. Zheng Bin said that building the test line would be a breakthrough in the field and a huge technological step forward in turning ideas into reality.
The low vacuum conditions of the tube and the experience passengers will have at such high speeds still need to be fully understood and addressed.