First Generation Revenue Service SCMAGLEV Test Vehicle Delivered
Over the Thanksgiving holiday, the Central Japan Railway Company (JR Central) took delivery of the very first generation of SCMAGLEV vehicles with revenue service specifications, known as the Series L0 (L-zero), at the Yamanashi Maglev Test Line in Tsuru, Japan.
A total of 5 vehicles have been ordered by JR Central, and have been manufactured by Nippon Sharyo and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. These vehicles will begin running tests by the end of 2013 upon the reopening of the Yamanashi Maglev Test Line. Subsequently, an additional 9 vehicles will be delivered after 2013 in conjunction with the testing schedule.
Since 1997, testing has utilized the Series MLX01 prototype train until the Yamanashi Maglev Test Line was temporary closed for renovation in the Fall of 2011. The world railroad speed record of 361 miles per hour was achieved with this train in 2003.
The Test Line is currently being upgraded to revenue service specifications, as well as being extended from its original length of 11.4 to 26.6 miles.
Whereas previously testing was undertaken to establish practical applicability of the SCMAGLEV system, testing using the Series L0 (L-zero) on the renewed and extended Yamanashi Maglev Test Line will further refine its technologies for use in commercial service.
While the testing using Series L0 (L-zero) is undertaken, construction will begin on the first revenue service line to utilize SCMAGLEV technology, known as the Chuo Shinkansen. The Yamanashi Maglev Test Line will become part of this line, as it will be built off of the Test Line in both directions towards Tokyo to the east and Nagoya to the west, for a length of 178 miles.
JR Central is fully privately funding the cost of constructing this line, which will operate at 311 miles per hour to connect Tokyo and Nagoya in just 40 minutes. The line will then be extended further west to Osaka, to complete the full 272-mile corridor in just 67 minutes.