Japan’s Next Bullet Train Could Speed Up to 310 mph

Japan has once again taken the lead towards building a much faster means of transportation after Central Japan Railway Company unveiled a prototype version of a new floating train capable of reaching a speed of 310 mph.

According to Japanese newspaper the Daily Yomiuri, the railway company is currently developing another magnetic levitation train that can break the 300 mph barrier without touching the ground.

In a test conducted in the company’s facility in Tsuru, Japan last week, a prototype of Series Lo train went as fast as 310 miles per hour. The train’s cars have the capacity to accommodate up to 24 passengers, though JR Tokai is planning to begin a five-car test run in late 2013.

However, the development of the high speed train may take years to attain perfection as the railway company will likely start using the train connecting Aichi and Tokyo by 2027. The cost of its production could cost a whooping $103 billion.

“Through the test runs, we will make final checks to ensure that commercial services are comfortable,” Yasukazu Endo, head of JR Tokai’s development center, told local media. The cost of the train was put at about Y8.44 trillion ($103 billion).

As of now, the fastest mass transportation train in the world run as fast as 60 mph and can make journey between stations in 90 minutes. The new high-speed train can cut the travel time down to 40 minutes while the latest train model being conceptualized can actually reach a staggering 361 mph.

Central Japan Railway Company also assured that their magnetic levitating trains are safer than ordinary trains because of the integration of several safety systems, including an auxiliary safety wheels that activates during power outage for smoother breaks. Moreover, the latest high-speed bullet train will emit lesser pollution than the one traveling from Shinagawa Station to Nagoyo – Japan’s third largest city. When it starts operating, each train will have 16 carriages and can carry up to 1,000 passengers.