‘Flight’ train to travel at 1,000 kph

By Liu Xuanzun Source:Global Times Published: 2018/10/11 22:58:44

Experience in aerospace science helps tech development


China unveiled a scale model of its high-speed flight train that is expected to travel at 1,000 kilometers an hour by 2025, with Chinese railway experts saying the country's experience in aerospace science would help develop the train.

The model was on exhibit at the 2018 National Mass Innovation and Entrepreneurship Week in Chengdu, capital of Southwest China's Sichuan Province on Wednesday, Chengdu Business Daily reported.

The train, which the State-owned China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation Limited (CASIC) began developing in 2015 and dubbed "T-Flight," will use an integrated, light- and heat- proof cabin 29.2 meters long and three meters wide, the report said.

The train will float 100 millimeters above the ground due to a close-to-vacuum railway environment and magnetic levitation technology, Chengdu Business Daily quoted Wang Yan, an employee at CASIC's Magnetic Levitation and Electromagnetic Propulsion Department, as saying.

"The train will slowly accelerate to 1,000 kilometers an hour," Wang said, noting that passengers will be safe and feel comfortable.

The train is expected to be dispatched every 200 seconds, similar to a subway train, Chengdu Business Daily reported, citing a promotional video at the event.

Together with US-based Hyperloop Transportation Technologies and Hyperloop One, CASIC is among only three companies in the world that have announced the development of a transportation system with a designed speed faster than 1,000 kilometers an hour, Wang said.

"CASIC started behind its competitors, but its experience with aerospace science has given it a decent start in the development of the high-speed flight train," Wang said.

Sun Zhang, a railway expert and professor at Shanghai Tongji University, told the Global Times on Thursday that many technologies like electromagnetic propulsion used in the flight train are similar to aerospace technologies.

The exhibit of the flight train shows that China is keeping up with its US counterpart in the field, Sun said.

The train will reach the test speed of 1,000 kilometers an hour by 2023, and will be capable of carrying passengers at that speed by 2025, Chengdu Business Daily reported.

However, Sun said that despite the fast-paced schedule, the technology remains experimental and will not have a direct impact on people's lives anytime soon.

Southwest Jiaotong University in Chengdu is experimenting on a similar technology by developing a test platform for trains to achieve a speed of 1,500 kilometers an hour, Beijing-based newspaper Science and Technology Daily reported.

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