China has been doing some incredible things with maglev technology and the country’s leading manufacturer of trains has now unveiled a new prototype maglev train which will be able to hit an astonishing top speed of 373 miles per hour. That’s just over 600 kilometers per hour. The train will be developed by the state-owned China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation. It will be tested for a couple of years before full production begins in 2021.
To get a sense of just how fast this train will be, it currently takes about four hours and thirty minutes to travel between Beijing and Shanghai by airplane. This train will cut down the travel time to three hours and thirty minutes.
This will be possible because even though airplanes typically cruise at speeds of up to 575 miles per hour, there’s a lot of time lost taxing to the runway, waiting for takeoff clearance, taxing to the gate, waiting for the ramp to connect, etc. Trains go from platform to platform and don’t have the same limitations. When you take into account that passengers won’t have to turn up well in advance like they have to do for flights, it will be a significant time saving for people who travel this route.
China already leads the way in the use of maglev technology. It operates the world’s fastest commercial maglev train service between Shanghai’s airport and the city center with a top speed of 267 miles per hour.