Shanghai Maglev Train

The Shanghai maglev train also known as Shanghai Transrapid,has a top speed of 430 km/h.Train use electromagnetic force so there is no contact between track and body.With maglev technology, the train travels along a guideway of magnets which control the train’s stability and speed. While the propulsion and levitation require no moving parts, the bogies can move in relation to the main body of the vehicle and some technologies require support by retractable wheels at speeds under 150 kph. This compares with electric multiple units that may have several dozen parts per bogie. Maglev trains can therefore in some cases be quieter and smoother than conventional trains and have the potential for much higher speeds.

Maglev vehicles have set several speed records, and maglev trains can accelerate and decelerate much faster than conventional trains; the only practical limitation is the safety and comfort of the passengers, although wind resistance at very high speeds can cause running costs that are four to five times that of conventional high-speed rail (such as the Tokaido Shinkansen). The power needed for levitation is typically not a large percentage of the overall energy consumption of a high-speed maglev system.Overcoming drag, which makes all land transport more energy intensive at higher speeds, takes the most energy. Vactrain technology has been proposed as a means to overcome this limitation. Maglev systems have been much more expensive to construct than conventional train systems, although the simpler construction of maglev vehicles makes them cheaper to manufacture and maintain.

Shanghai Maglev Train

Japan operates two independently developed maglev trains. One is HSST (and its descendant, the Linimo line) by Japan Airlines and the other, which is more well known, is SCMaglev by the Central Japan Railway Company.

The development of the latter started in 1969. Maglev trains on the Miyazaki test track regularly hit 517 km/h (321 mph) by 1979. After an accident which destroyed the train, a new design was selected. In Okazaki, Japan (1987), the SCMaglev was used for test rides at the Okazaki exhibition. Tests in Miyazaki continued throughout the 1980s, before transferring to a far longer test track, 20 km (12 mi) long, in Yamanashi in 1997. The track has since been extended to almost 43 km (27 mi). The current 603 km/h (375 mph) world speed record for manned trains was set there in 2015.


The highest-recorded maglev speed is 603 km/h (375 mph), achieved in Japan by JR Central’s L0 superconducting maglev on 21 April 2015, 28 km/h (17 mph) faster than the conventional TGV wheel-rail speed record. However, the operational and performance differences between these two very different technologies is far greater. The TGV record was achieved accelerating down a 72.4 km (45 mi) slight decline, requiring 13 minutes. It then took another 77.25 km (48 mi) for the TGV to stop, requiring a total distance of 149.65 km (93 mi) for the test. The MLX01 record, however, was achieved on the 18.4 km (11.4 mi) Yamanashi test track – 1/8 the distance. No maglev or wheel-rail commercial operation has actually been attempted at speeds over 500 km/h (310 mph).

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