Japan unveils prototype of new maglev train, promises speeds of up to 311 mph

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More than a year after the Central Japan Railway Company (JR Tokai) received construction approval to get going on its maglev railways, it has finally unveiled a Series L0 prototype that would put its current bullet train system to shame. Designed to travel at 311 mph, a single one of these high-speed marvels is designed to carry about 16 carriages, which translates to about 1,000 commuters. While Japanese travelers already enjoy a speedy 90-minute trip from Tokyo to Nagoya, this new maglev system promises to cut that journey to just 40 minutes. Announced nearly five years ago , the project has since been extended to include an Osaka-Tokyo leg and will cost around nine trillion yen (approximately $112 billion) when all is said and done. Don’t pack your bags just yet though; the maglev’s Nagoya rail isn’t scheduled to go live until 2027, and the boarding call for Osaka isn’t until 2045. Of course, if you need to ride electromagnetic rails now , there’s always China’s Shanghai Transrapid, which has been ferrying passengers to and fro the Pudong airport since 2004 — it once reached speeds of 501km/h (311mph). China’s even planning a whopping 1,000 km/h vacuum-tube maglev train in just a year or so. Of course, those of us on the other end of the Pacific are still waiting for that long-delayed California-Nevada maglev project to work out. Sigh. Filed under: Transportation Comments Via: Inhabitat Source: Phys.org

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Japan unveils prototype of new maglev train, promises speeds of up to 311 mph

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