China to adopt high-speed wheel/rail technology and ditch high-speed 'Maglev'
People's Daily Online: January 24, 2006
The China South Locomotive and Rolling Stock Industry (Group) Corporation (CSR), a major supplier for China railways, inked a developing agreement on financial cooperation on Monday with the China Development Bank.
According to the agreement, the bank will provide a 15-billion-yuan developing financial loan to support CSR's researches on high-speed trains traveling at the speed of 200-300 kilometers per hour in the next three years. The CSR said it has started the production of 60 high-speed trains in the country, reports the Beijing Times on Tuesday.
This signifies that China will adopt "wheel/rail technology" and the "magnetic levitation" technology will be phased out thoroughly. China's high-speed trains, planned for many years, have passed the stage of planning.
The first batch of 120 high-speed trains has been put on order, said Zhang Xinning, spokesperson with the CSR in an exclusive interview with the Beijing Times' reporter. The CSR has received an order of 60 trains, which has been handed over to its subsidiary, CSR Sifang Locomotive and Rolling to build.
Zhang disclosed that China's high-speed trains will be more comfortable for passengers than the BSP passenger cars on the Beijing-Shanghai rail line. In addition to fast speed, the high-speed trains in the nation will be more comfortable and safer than those of other countries. It is more worth noting that the high-speed trains will have China's own brand. The CSR will import the technology from a Japanese company in manufacturing.
As a matter of fact, the 15-billion loan includes the import of the Japanese technology. In addition, the loan will also include the technological import of the CSR motor train sets traveling at the speed of 200 kilometers per hour, high-power electric locomotives and diesel locomotives.
China Develops First Maglev Train
China's first medium to low-speed magnetic levitation train debuts in the northern city of Tangshan. Photo: Xinhua
Chinese engineers have developed the country's first medium- and low-speed magnetic levitation train which travels 150 kilometers per hour, the developers said on Tuesday.
A series of tests show that the performance of the train reached the standards for safety and reliability, said engineers who have spent two years in the development.
The train, which also produces low noise and is pollution free with low maintenance cost, will be mainly used for the urban traffic system of the country.
Compared with fast maglev trains, the medium- and low-speed ones consume less energy. Therefore, the construction of medium- and low-speed maglev train lines in urban areas has become a new focus worldwide, according to industry insiders.
China opened the world's first commercial magnetic levitation train with the highest velocity of more than 430 kilometers per hour in Shanghai in 2002, based on German technology. The development of the medium- and low-speed maglev train indicated China has become the third country in the world able to build maglev trains, following Germany and Japan.
Maglev train lines have been considered as an effective means to deal with the heavy passenger flow in the Yangtze River Delta, one of the economic powerhouses in China.