Official media said on Tuesday that China had launched a maglev train with a maximum speed of 600 km/h.

The top speed will make this train independently developed by China and manufactured in the coastal city of Qingdao the fastest ground vehicle in the world.

Using electromagnetic force, the maglev train “floats” above the track, and there is no contact between the body and the track.

For the past two decades, China has been using this technology on a very limited scale. Shanghai has a short maglev line from one of its airports to the city.

Although there are no inter-city or inter-provincial maglev lines in China that can take advantage of higher speeds, some cities such as Shanghai and Chengdu have begun to conduct research.

At a speed of 600 km/h, it takes only 2.5 hours to travel from Beijing to Shanghai by train—more than 1,000 kilometers (620 miles).

In comparison, it takes 3 hours to take an airplane and 5.5 hours to take a high-speed rail.

Countries from Japan to Germany are also seeking to build magnetic levitation networks, although high costs and incompatibility with current rail infrastructure are still obstacles to rapid development.


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