(Yicai Global) Jan. 26 -- An expert review panel has greenlit China's plans to develop a 600-kilometer-per-hour magnetic levitation rail and build a prototype this year.
The finished train should be ready by 2020 and will debut after a five-kilometer trial operation, state-backed online news outlet The Paper reported yesterday, citing a source from Chinese rolling stock maker CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co.
Grander plans behind the new locomotive include the industrialization of high-speed maglev engineering, said Ding Sansan, deputy chief engineer at the firm. The panel believes the new transport system will strike a happy medium between current high-speed trains, which top out at 350 kilometers an hour, and air travel.
Japan and Germany have also made big leaps in high-speed maglevs. The Asian island's superconducting systems can run at up to 603 kilometers an hour, while those in the European engineering hub can operate up to 505 kilometers an hour. China built the first maglev for commercial use in Shanghai using German technology, it can travel at up to 430 kilometers an hour.