A state-owned rail company in China has built the prototype for a blazingly fast maglev train. The new prototype, built by the China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation (CRRC), is being designed to carry passengers at 373 mph (600 km/h). China hopes the train will be serving passengers in 2021.
"Take Beijing to Shanghai as an example - counting preparation time for the journey, it takes about 4.5 hours by plane, about 5.5 hours by high-speed rail, and [would only take] about 3.5 hours with [the new] high-speed maglev," said CRRC deputy chief engineer Ding Sansan, head of the train's research and development team, in a statement to CNN.
The prototype has been in development for around three years, Ding says. His team feels they have created a lightweight and high-strength train body that will serve as a testing foundation for five more prototypes after this one. To compliment and serve the progress Ding's team is making, CRRC Qingdao Sifang, a subsidiary of the CRRC, will be building an experimental center and a high-speed maglev trial production center by the end of 2019.
The new prototype is China's entry into a regional battle for high-speed train supremacy: Japan's proposed bullet train, which will be finished in a decade or so, has a proposed speed of 224 mph (360 km/h).
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