TGV breaks rail speed record

An enhanced version of France's TGV train has broken the world speed record for a train running on rails.

TGV breaks rail speed record

An enhanced version of France'sTGV train has broken the world speed record for a train running on rails.

The experimental V150 train, which had two locomotives and extra-largewheels, reached 574.8kph on a specially prepared section of track east of Paris, the Frenchcapital.

The previous record of 515.3kph was also set by a TGV train in 1990.

The train reached similar speeds in trials in recent months, but this was thefirst test to be officially monitored.

"We saw the countryside go by a little faster than we did during thetests," Eric Pieczac, the train's driver, said after the record wasbroken.

"I'm proud to have fulfilled the mission.

"There are about 10,000 engineers who would want to be in my place ...It makes me very happy, a mixed feeling of pride and honour to be able to reachthis speed."

The record-breaking train was an enhanced version of the ones that willrun on the new Paris-Strasbourg line from June 10 which wil reduce thejourney time from four hours to two hours and 20 minutes.

Enhanced train

The train was equipped with larger wheels than the usual TGV to cover moreground with each rotation and a stronger, 25,000-horsepower engine, said AlainCuccaroni, the technician in charge of testing.

The electrical tension in the overhead cable was also increased, from25,000 volts to 31,000.

Alstom, the manufacturer of the train, arranged the record attempt withstate railways group SNCF and track operator RFF in order to test its latestengineering designs in extreme conditions and showcase French engineering tohelp boost sales abroad.
Jacques Chirac, the French president, congratulated "this new proof of theexcellence of the French rail industry".
"Economically efficient and respectful of the environment, the TGV is amajor asset in efforts to ensure sustainable developmentin transport."

France'selectrically-powered TGV trains have been operating since 1981, reaching speedsof 320kph over about 1,600km of track across the country.

"Philippe Mellier, the head of Alstom's transport division, said the speedof commercial TGV trains could reach 350-360 kph in the next five-to-six years.

"An operator and a country that wants to launch high-speed rail, thatis a lot of money at stake, they need to be able to do that in complete safety,"he said.

The TGV narrowly missed out on breaking the overall world train speed record of581kph which a Japanese magnetic levitation train, Maglev, reached in 2003.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16