Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

China Debuts the World's Fastest Train

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the us-falls-behind-again dept.

Transportation 491

An anonymous reader writes "China unveiled their new high speed train that clocks in at an average of 217 mph. China's new rail service travels through 20 cities along its route, connecting central China and less developed regions to the larger and more industrial Pearl River Delhi. Seimens, Bombardier and Alstom worked together to design and build this feat of modern transportation, which topped out at a whopping 245mph (394km/h) during trial runs earlier in December."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

China debuts human rights abuses (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30574802)

let's glorify them!

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (0, Flamebait)

daemonenwind (178848) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574822)

Amazing how fast a train can run when you use the blood of your critics to lube the rails.

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (5, Insightful)

wickerprints (1094741) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574996)

Well, if you want someone to blame, blame US corporations for sending jobs to China and the US government for allowing trillions of dollars of trade deficit with China, that enables their government to be the economic powerhouse it is. The biggest abusers of human rights in the world is not China--it is the multinational corporations, many of them headquartered in the US, that exploits people in developing countries for cheap labor and props up dictatorial regimes so long as they make it easy and profitable for them to do business. And if you want to find out how these corporations got so powerful, all you need to do is go look to the Americans whose insatiable desire for cheap mass-produced goods has fed their gluttony with their hard-earned dollars.

You want this high-speed rail technology in the US? Stop running up all that credit card debt. Stop turning over your livelihood and savings to buy your own little slice of the American McDream(tm).

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575060)

Stop turning over your livelihood and savings to buy your own little slice of the American McDream(tm).

You're very proud of that little bon mot, aren't you?

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575122)

If a nigger and a fine white man both run into a tunnel at the exact same time, who comes out first? The fine white man, because the nigger had to stop and spraypaint his gang sign on the wall.

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575162)

Wait... you're saying if I stop shopping a Walmart, the Chinese will stop jailing anyone who exercises their legally protected right to petition the government?!? Mind-bending!

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (3, Insightful)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575414)

No, it's saying that if you stop shopping at Wal-Mart, you'll stop buying stuff made in China, and so stop financing their human-rights abuses.

Wwhich is wrong twice:

1. China was committing human rights abuses long before prosperity, even before Mao. Cutting off the money will NOT make things better.

2. You cannot avoid buying stuff made in China, unless you pay very close attention to what you buy and where. And even then, you will be buying some stuff made in China, and made with stuff gotten from China.

We need to lose the 'don't buy Chinese stuff' mentality, and stop discouraging industries from making stuff here in the U.S.

We could be buying stuff made in Japan and South Korea, and Taiwan, but even those industries are beholden to China too often.

This will take decades to fix.

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (4, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575462)

I see how this works: it's too hard to do what's right, so let's not bother to try. And: they were doing it anyway, so why should we have to give up cheap goods?

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (1)

JustOK (667959) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575506)

Right. Well put.

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (2, Funny)

Aeros (668253) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575566)

I know..I give up..why bother

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575548)

And what of the millions raised out of poverty by the U.S. - China trade? Don't they have "human rights" too?

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/27/opinion/27brooks.html

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (4, Insightful)

uradu (10768) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575208)

Not just the US, mind you, but the entire western world that is more than eager to offload manufacturing to China. We're all guilty of turning two blind eyes to save a buck, but I guess as long as we occasionally get to protest China's abuses in a public forum or some magazine opinion piece, all's well.

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575214)

Your right it couldn't be from a Communist government which is has been slowly dyeing for decades but still struggling to maintain power. It is all those outsiders who give the people on the inside a glimpse what else could be out there in the world a reason to revolt.

The China has the worlds largest population... The only reason why it hasn't kicked the US butt in the past in terms of achievement as the fact that they though it was a good idea to isolate themselves from the world. Now that they decided to be more active in the world any country would be a fool not to give them interest. It isn't just about money but for national security. We have no trade with china they don't like what we want. A war with China will be overall a really BAD thing. A country about the Size of the United States with a MUCH larger population.

"slowly dyeing for decades" (1)

dtmos (447842) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575450)

What color are they?

Re:China debuts human rights abuses (1)

gregarican (694358) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575150)

Plus you have this guy [youtube.com] as the train's engineer!

mph ?q (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30574820)

Sorry using metric system over here... Damn Americans...

Yup (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575028)

I first thought "Oh, come on. I am european too but it isn't that difficult to use google calculator for instant answer: http://www.google.com/search?q=217+miles+to+kilometres [google.com] . You are just being rediculous now."

Then I looked at TFA (sorry, guys). It actually has the next paragraph:

Averaging 217 mph (350 km/h), the new train is faster than a speeding bullet train, and will link Wuhan in central China to Guangzhou in the south, covering a total distance of 663 miles (1,068 km). The new rail service will cut the travel time between the cities from over 6 hours down to 2 hours and 45 minutes

As it was already mentioned in TFA, the submitter could have just... not decided to leave it out. Hell, he could have just used that paragraph.

Pearl River Delta?? (4, Informative)

l2718 (514756) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574844)

Delhi is in India.

Re:Pearl River Delta?? (5, Funny)

eln (21727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574900)

No no, they mean the Pearl River Deli. It's on the East Side, and their pastrami on rye is to die for. I don't know how they got a train to go there all the way from China, but it sounds like I'm going to have to start getting my lunch earlier to beat the rush!

Re:Pearl River Delta?? (1)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575124)

No no, they mean the Pearl River Deli. It's on the East Side

Not being from NYC I can't rightly tell what part of NY this is meant to be called, but there is a town called "Perl River", and yes, the have Deli's

Pearl River Deli [google.com]

Anyone ever eaten at one of these???

Re:Pearl River Delta?? (2, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575532)

I think this thread is the one where "WOOSH!" is completely applicable!

It seems a sad irony that Japan, a tiny country with little land mass has the world's fastest trains, while the US and its huge land mass seemingly has the world's slowest.

Why do the Europeans* have better roads and faster trains than us? Maybe there's something to that "socialism" after all!

*yes, I realise that Japan isn't in Europe, smartass.

Re:Pearl River Delta?? (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575074)

The river got outsourced.

Siemens, not Seimens... (5, Informative)

the_g_cat (821331) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574864)

Siemens, not Seimens...

Re:Siemens, not Seimens... (2, Funny)

AP31R0N (723649) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575366)

Siemans not Semens.

Re:Siemens, not Seimens... (-1, Troll)

r00t (33219) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575502)

They have an office in Staines. Really.

It's in Germany. In their language, it's called something like Douche Republic.

You can't make this shit up!

How hard is it to have something like this in US? (1)

parallel_prankster (1455313) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574868)

I mean, we could something that connect the high traffic areas in the East Coast and California. This has 2 benefits. Reducing pollution from all the cars that it takes out of the roads and lesser dependence on the airlines that seem to have become so unreliable. Atleast we wont have so many baggage payments to make.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (4, Insightful)

BearRanger (945122) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574936)

It's not hard, just expensive. Unlike the Chinese we actually have to pay market rates to compensate people for the right of way for the rails. Seizing private property and forcing the owners to accept a pittance in return just won't work in the U.S.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (3, Insightful)

jcr (53032) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575072)

Seizing private property and forcing the owners to accept a pittance in return just won't work in the U.S.

I wish you were correct, but since Kelo v. New London, I have to disagree.

-jcr

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (4, Insightful)

amRadioHed (463061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575230)

Kelo v. New London was about the government being able to use eminent domain to free up propety for commercial development. As far as I've seen it had nothing to do with the amount of compensation given to people for their property, and in Kelo v. New London the plaintiffs were given market value for their property.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

alen (225700) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575250)

New London did have to pay market rates for the homes. it's just that the original ED took place before the big housing bubble run up in prices of 2004-2007

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575200)

These aren't the people who built the railroads, Dude.

Chinaman is NOT the preferred nomenclature.

History much? (1)

interploy (1387145) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575404)

It worked with the Native Americans.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575558)

pittance in return just won't work in the U.S.

You're right, that's why generally they are offered fair market value, or something that's at least reasonable, and not a pittance. Please note I did not phrase things in absolutes.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

mikael (484) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574962)

The problem is getting land rights from every county boundary. California proposed a high-speed shuttle train from San Francisco to Los Angeles via Sacremento that would take less than 90 minutes. The mayors of all three cities were extremely happy about this. Unfortunately, the mayors of all the cities in between also wanted a stop at their city. For every city that had a stop, that would add another 5 minutes to the train journey, and at least 20 other cities were wanting stations in their towns.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

rleibman (622895) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575046)

[citation needed] Doesn't ring true. Sacramento is North-East of San Francisco, you don't get to L.A. from San Francisco by going to Sacramento first... look at a map. I could see a north-south route parallel to I5 that split about where I580 splits with some trains going to San Francisco and others going to Sacramento (and further north, to Redding, perhaps?)

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (4, Informative)

arunkv (116142) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575212)

Yes, it's not SF to LA via Sacramento. It's two branches from Fresno to SF and Sacramento. You can see the proposed map here [ca.gov] .

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575266)

The problem is getting land rights from every county boundary. California proposed a high-speed shuttle train from San Francisco to Los Angeles via Sacremento that would take less than 90 minutes. The mayors of all three cities were extremely happy about this. Unfortunately, the mayors of all the cities in between also wanted a stop at their city. For every city that had a stop, that would add another 5 minutes to the train journey, and at least 20 other cities were wanting stations in their towns.

Japanese rail handles this by having several tiers of trains. Some trains run much faster, and have less stops, and the stations and schedules are designed so that the "faster" trains pass the more frequently stopping ones. As long as the schedules are perfect and the stations have passing lanes you could easily have a route that only stops in 2 cities running side-by-side with a route that stops at every one.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575586)

The problem is getting land rights from every county boundary.

And that's why eminent domain exists.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30574964)

No way, not possible. First of all you'll have the NIMBY's out protesting with their M4A1's threatening to secede due to the huge power grab by the state for land rights or whatever and that it "looks ugly." Then you'll have the Corporate Overlords from automotive/airliners bemoaning about their guaranteed right of increased profit margins. Thirdly you'll have the politicos saying that the terrorists could use it to travel around the country with greater ease and/or make it a terrorist target. Last but not least you'll have some religious bureaucrats saying how this is a plot against God and is un-American or some shit, probably Pat Buchanan will be against it because it could be used by gay/black/female persons. This will be modded flamebait but is absolutely true in every aspect I am afraid.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (2, Informative)

Trepidity (597) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575012)

How "hard" is it is mainly a matter of spending money and ramming through the environmental permits, eminent domain seizures, and other such hurdles. China spent $20 billion on this, probably more like $30 billion at purchasing-power parity, and they also have a much larger supply of cheap labor (even cheap semi-skilled labor), and when the central government wants something done, bureaucratic hassles magically disappear.

Although they did also put it mainly on flat land. Some of our most promising city pairs with high traffic and strong local support for such a project are unfortunately in or separated by mountainous areas: LA-SF, Seattle-Portland, Atlanta-DC, etc.

We do have flat areas, like Chicago-Detroit and Chicago-StLouis, but they don't have quite that volume of travel, and no strong push.

Texas is occasionally actually seen as the best bet, with Dallas-Houston-Austin-San Antonio all fairly close (distances where rail is competitive over air) and separated by fairly flat land. However, Southwest has spent a lot of lobbying effort killing any attempts to put something like that in, since they do a lot of short-hop business out of their original Dallas hub.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575064)

Very easy, as long as it is not in my back yard!

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

alen (225700) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575090)

the northeast already has a nice rail system called LIRR/Metro-North and NJ Transit. It brings millions of people to work every day. too bad it's fairly expensive and very full at the moment. they are in the process of digging new tunnels to expand the number of trains they are able to run.

as for long distance rail, Amtrak is already unreliable. there is no reason to think that a new high speed train will be reliable and there is no benefit over flying. airports already have the infrastructure like rent a cars and public transportation that will have to be duplicated at a new high speed rail station.

for the speed it sounds nice, but that is not the entire way. i've traveled on the Eurostar in Italy and it took something like 20 minutes to slow down and speed up when entering and leaving big stations like Venezia, Roma and Fiorenze.

i also know someone that used to take the Acela from NYC to Boston for work years ago and it took like 3 hours each way. The Delta Shuttle was 1 hour. 90 minutes if you count getting to the airport early. back when we bought a competitor we used to fly to Boston in the morning and come back for dinner. if we took the train it would mean extra expenses in staying at a hotel

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (3, Informative)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575220)

Amtrak has the problem that it leases the use of many of the rails it uses. As a result, passenger trains have to yield to the trains of the owners of the rail - usually slow, long freight trains. Even worse, the freight trains aren't a fixed schedule, so Amtrak can't schedule around the delays.

One fix would be to install new (standard speed0 rails alongside the existing ones. It would be fairly cheap (as compared to high speed rail) and would allow Amtrak to travel at high speeds for more of their routes.

Of course, even better would be a nationwide network of high speed rail, but I don't believe that there's enough pressure from airline-fed-up consumers and environmentalists yet to encourage the politicians to do anything.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575554)

Amtrak has the problem that it leases the use of many of the rails it uses.

He was talking about New York to Boston, all of which is owned outright by Amtrak. The Acela, however, barely runs at 80 mph on average, partially because of old infrastructure, and partially because of federal regulations requiring dedicated rails for high-speed trains.

Essentially either Amtrak would have to build new sets of rails between Boston and DC (which would require more bridges, and more right-of-way), or the FRA would have to loosen its regulations (good luck).

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (4, Insightful)

amRadioHed (463061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575296)

as for long distance rail, Amtrak is already unreliable. there is no reason to think that a new high speed train will be reliable and there is no benefit over flying.

I think there is some reason to think high-speed rail would be more reliable. One of Amtrak's major problems right now is that they don't own the rails they use, they share them with freight companies. A new high-speed rail line, however, would be built specifically for passenger service and would not have this problem.

Re:How hard is it to have something like this in U (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575482)

airports already have the infrastructure like rent a cars and public transportation that will have to be duplicated at a new high speed rail station.

Do you have any idea where Grand Central Station in NYC or Union Station in CHC are located? Beyond obviously, they are in NYC, and CHC, I mean? Obviously the last mile would have to be at the sedate 60 MPH the trains currently cruise at, but thats only one minute...

Another form of infrastructure is best demonstrated by Amtrak MKA station, aka MARS, which is on the airport grounds...

I've been to all three stations... the idea that there is a lack of station transportation infrastructure is laughable.

Dictartorship = Effciency (1)

ub3r n3u7r4l1st (1388939) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575312)

Once again proved that our natives are more superior than yours. Time to wipe out the white-man based Euro-centric NWO.

Re:Dictartorship = Effciency (1)

frosty_tsm (933163) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575424)

I think 2001-2008 America proved this isn't the case.

(I know I'll be burned by the mods, but soooo worth it).

245mph max speed? Not so impressive (2, Interesting)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574870)

The french managed 357mph (yes three hundred) with a lightly modified TGV in 2007 (google it).

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (4, Informative)

l2718 (514756) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574896)

Yes, but the maximum speed is largely irrelevant. What matters to the travelling public is the average speed -- and this train is faster than the TGV in that regard.

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (1, Informative)

BESTouff (531293) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575238)

Yes, the commercial speed of the TGV is 200mph, quite lower.

That said, the TGV is way older (research started in the sixties, first commercial run in 1981) and had time to be debugged to death. I wouldn't put my ass in that Chinese train before a few years.

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575384)

Well, the Chinese number is the maximum speed too. So your point is invalid.

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575436)

Though average speed is more about the track. I guess it's not inconceivable to have less curves and longer distances between stations in China.

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (1)

rossdee (243626) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575552)

In a claim for 'worlds fastest' the maximum speed is relevant. (as long as its timed both ways.)

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (2, Informative)

DeadPixels (1391907) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574914)

BBC article is here [bbc.co.uk] . Unfortunately, the article doesn't discuss whether or not this sort of train would actually be useful for passenger service or if the technology still needed some work. I would wager that the Chinese train is probably the fastest commercial (conventional rail) train.

Re: 357mph vs 245mph (1)

xiando (770382) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574926)

There is some difference between setting a speed record once and running a regular train service which is actually used by people on a daily basis.

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (1, Informative)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574948)

I was about to accuse you of being a NASA employee, but it appears you are right.
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/04/03/fastest_train_attempt/ [theregister.co.uk]

I think this means the fastest regular timetabled train service rather than the fastest a train has ever travelled, because quite a few trains have broken the 400 km/h barrier in test runs.

Re:245mph max speed? TGV not the fastest (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575144)

Japanese Maglev went to 581 km/h 361 mph.

Re:245mph max speed? TGV not the fastest (1)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575274)

Considering a conventional train has now got with 4mph of that record its not so impressive given that maglevs only have air resistance to worry about, not rolling resistance.

Re:245mph max speed? Not so impressive (2, Funny)

WinPimp2K (301497) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575152)

But the real questions is:

how fast will it run Ruby (on rails)?

Sad news ... Stephen King, dead at 62 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30574872)

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - Horror/Sci Fi writer Stephen King was found dead in his Maine home this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying his contributions to popular culture. Truly an American icon.

Re:Sad news ... Stephen King, dead at 62 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575058)

Oh, I get it... It's funny because...hmm, wait. No - I don't get it. I think I see why you think this is hilarious, but you're just a moron.

Re:Sad news ... Stephen King, dead at 62 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575128)

And every time I read that troll, I keep hoping that they're not kidding and he actually is dead. I mean, how many hacky horror novels can a schmuck from Maine turn out before the rest of us stop caring?

Finally! Some relief in sight ... (1)

Croakus (663556) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574888)

Finally, some relief to all the congestion! Why, just look at the clogged city streets in those photographs! Not to mention the thriving metropolis that the train services! Obviously the Chinese people desperately needed this triumph of technology to help relieve the many burdens of their successful and thriving economy.

Almost as much as they need food and clothing!

China A Developing Country? (4, Interesting)

XopherMV (575514) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574906)

It seems to me that when China has some of the best developed infrastructure in the world, it really can't be considered a developing country any more. It is developed. Sure, maybe not all areas of China are fully developed, but you could state the same thing about any country, including the US.

Re:China A Developing Country? (3, Insightful)

khallow (566160) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575008)

OTOH, most countries have some part, perhaps a very small one, that has technology, local infrastructure, and such equivalent or better than the average in the developed world. Should we call every country "developed" as a result?

Re:China A Developing Country? (1)

Gerafix (1028986) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575050)

That's like going to Egypt and visiting Cairo and then saying, "Well Africa is developed, maybe not some parts..."

Re:China A Developing Country? (1)

kidgenius (704962) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575192)

Go to any country and you will find parts that are "not developed"

Re:China A Developing Country? (2, Informative)

FooMasterZero (515781) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575260)

Isn't Africa technically a continent not a country?

Re:China A Developing Country? (2, Funny)

Gerafix (1028986) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575396)

Yeah, sorry. I don't have maps and my education such as like South Africa and the Iraq has not build up yet.

Re:China A Developing Country? (2, Insightful)

Jeian (409916) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575134)

But if they give up their "developing country" status, they can't play that card in demanding concessions from developed countries any more.

Re:China A Developing Country? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575318)

Uh, 90%+ of their population are dirt farmers. Have you ever been to China? In a vast majority of the country it's literally like stepping back in time to the dark ages.

Re:China A Developing Country? (3, Insightful)

vlm (69642) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575528)

It seems to me that when China has some of the best developed infrastructure in the world, it really can't be considered a developing country any more. It is developed. Sure, maybe not all areas of China are fully developed, but you could state the same thing about any country, including the US.

The opposite of a developing nation, like China, is not developed, as in film, but a decaying nation, like the USA.

Once China has a couple unmaintained bridge collapses, maybe a few regional power failures, some abandoned cities like Detroit, then they will no longer be a developing nation.

Nice (2, Interesting)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30574912)

Averaging 217 mph over a distance of 663 miles, supposedly connecting 20 cities... according to TFA, a trip of under three hours...

Just how much time are they allowing for deceleration and acceleration between stops? Or is it pretty much end-to-end with multiple stops near the origin and destination?

Anyway, there's little doubt in my mind that this is overkill, more a demonstration of technical capability and will to spend than anything else. But damn, I'd like to have a network of these in the US to replace our aging and slow rail passenger rail system. At the very least, they are much more energy efficient than air travel.

One picky point with TFA... it suggests that the fast travel times of a high-speed rail network would not come with the security overhead of air travel. I'm not so sure about that.

Re:Nice (5, Funny)

jimbobborg (128330) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575036)

It's China, they just throw the people off the train as they pass their station.

Re:Nice (1)

DeathToBill (601486) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575108)

Sigh. Try going from London to Paris by air and by train, and see which one takes longer. Why was that? Oh, yeah...

Re:Nice (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575344)

Sigh. Try going from London to Paris by air and by train, and see which one takes longer. Why was that? Oh, yeah...

This is the US, not GB/Europe. Cultural phenomena like security theater are not the same in every region or country.

Keep in mind that Boeing and the other aircraft manufacturers employ a lot of people here, and have a lot of cash that would like to ensure the primacy of air for long-distance travel (plus the long-standing bias against rail transport as a holdover from the robber baron era).

Re:Nice (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575562)

Well, Airbus slightly surpasses Boeing lately (when we're talking about passenger planes, all tthat matters here), but this doesn't seem to be blocking expansion of high-speed rail in Europe...

Re:Nice (1)

pclminion (145572) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575298)

Averaging 217 mph over a distance of 663 miles, supposedly connecting 20 cities... according to TFA, a trip of under three hours...

It just isn't possible. Assuming that, at each city, you have 3 minutes of deceleration, a stop time of 10 minutes, and 5 minutes of acceleration, that's 18*20 = 360 minutes, or 6 hours. That doesn't even include time at full speed. Okay, let's be insane and decelerate in only 1 minute and accelerate in 2 and stop for only 3 minutes, that's now two hours, leaving you one hour to travel 663 miles for an average speed of (duh) 663 miles per hour. That means top speed is somewhat more than that, but approximating the top speed as 663 MPH, then decelerating from 663 to 0 in one minute would give about 0.5 G's, which is going to be an uncomfortable experience for an entire minute. At the very least you would need to be facing backward so you'd be pressed into your seat instead of thrown out of it. It's just totally impossible.

Re:Nice (4, Informative)

Rakishi (759894) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575416)

Or they use this amazing concept known as express and local trains. The express train stops in only a few places which you use the much slower local train to get to.

Re:Nice (1)

Ouchie (1386333) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575320)

I'd like to have a network of these in the US to replace our aging and slow rail passenger rail system. At the very least, they are much more energy efficient than air travel. One picky point with TFA... it suggests that the fast travel times of a high-speed rail network would not come with the security overhead of air travel. I'm not so sure about that.

I tend to agree with you on several of these points. Everytime I read something like this I ask myself, "Why not in the US." While the long distance would probably be a factor in the lack of transcontinental high speed rail but there is solid evidence to support regional high speed rail systems.

The TFA has a point that you can't secure the rails but you can counter that with, 'you can't fly a train into the pentagon.'

If they implimented a high speed rail system to cover the densly populated northeast and great lakes regions and pass legislation to limit short hop flights you could reduce air trafic in the US by 25%.

Re:Nice (4, Interesting)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575518)

Everytime I read something like this I ask myself, "Why not in the US."

It has come up many, many times before but each time the airline lobbies kill it dead. Its really amazing just how powerful this collection of interests has proved to be over time. Generally speaking, they almost always get everything they want.

The general rule of thumb is, if the airline lobbies want something, its almost a sure thing to be bad for you, me, and Joe consumer.

Re:Nice (1)

amRadioHed (463061) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575342)

One picky point with TFA... it suggests that the fast travel times of a high-speed rail network would not come with the security overhead of air travel. I'm not so sure about that.

Why do you think rail would have the same security overhead? Last time I used Amtrak there was no security at all. It was a very refreshing departure from what I was used to with air travel.

Comparisons (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30574984)

Many western countries have borderline or outright political prisoners. Since China has such an enormous population I wonder how the numbers compare percentage wise.

There is also the issue where statistics turn sentences political. One example might be the extreme over representation of afro-americans in the us prison system. At some point you have to accept that it is systematic oppression.

Also see Northern Ireland for secession related issues.

I'm honestly just curious about those numbers. I'm in no way an apologist for China or other oppressive states.

Re:Comparisons (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575322)

Unfortunately (literally), there's an extreme over representation of afro-americans committing crimes.

56 trains a day (5, Informative)

Animats (122034) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575056)

Here's a better version of the story. [ft.com] This is a big deal. They're running 56 trains a day on that route. They're also the longest high speed trains running. So this is a high-volume people mover. Plans call for another 11,000 Km of high speed rail by 2012. That's only two years away.

Some of this is a consequence of the financial troubles and low interest rates in the US. The government of China had been putting excess cash into U.S. Treasury bills, but about a year ago they stopped buying more US debt and started spending on infrastructure and resources. China has been buying up mines and farms around the world to secure supplies of raw materials and food, while beefing up their infrastructure at home.

Big Picture: this is no surprise at all (2, Funny)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575148)

The US and the whole western world have almost completely outsourced their whole production and with it, the technology, to China. When I visited the various Smithsonian museums, just for shits and giggles I asked at the souvenir shops if they had a single item that wasn't made in China. I repeated this little game in various museums. Try as they may, the shopkeepers weren't able to find a single fucking item that wasn't Made in China. Not one. This just to illustrate you the magnitude of production in China, and the magnitude of how much the west has given up. The Chinese aren't idiots; they learn and are about to surpass the west in many technological areas.

Re:Big Picture: this is no surprise at all (1)

onefriedrice (1171917) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575332)

There is a difference between outsourcing cheap toys and souvenirs and outsourcing "technology." You claim the latter and then proceeded to talk only about the former, which is something we all know about. Not that outsourcing manufacturing is ideal, but "technology" at least is still something that is largely created in Western countries and Japan.

Re:Big Picture: this is no surprise at all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575536)

I'd have to argue that all the 'higher end' technology you can imagine just isn't sustainable in any society that doesn't have a viable supporting infrastructure. In the U.S. we're in the middle of a historic shift where we have all kinds of super cool technology but our infrastructure is crumbling, with very little political or social incentive to make substantial change in the status quo.

Re:Big Picture: this is no surprise at all (1)

fprintf (82740) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575394)

China is the new Japan. For those of us who lived in the States in the late 70s and early 80s, everything was being made by the Japanese and they were buying everything over here. Ski resorts, swanky real estate, heck even Rockerfeller Center in NYCity.

Fuel efficiency of this train vs airplane? (4, Interesting)

walterbyrd (182728) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575310)

If trains can travel that fast safely. Then it seems we could cut down air traffic considerably. NYC to Atalanta is only about 800 miles, if I could get there by train in four hours, a airplane would offer no time advantage.

If the difference in fuel efficiency is considerable, then maybe the US should consider building something like that?

Re:Fuel efficiency of this train vs airplane? (1)

pagaboy (1029878) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575410)

The US could even outsource it to the Chinese...

America Fuck Yeah !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575382)

Another first For American Can do - Oh wait ....

In other news, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575390)

US astronauts walk on moon

uh, 40 years ago

Very fast (1)

palmerj3 (900866) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575392)

This train can go from Wuhan to Guangzhou faster than the Chinese government can block this po.... [no signal]

Pennies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30575472)

So what happens when a train going 245mph encounters a penny on the track?

China's Achievements (3, Insightful)

argmanah (616458) | more than 4 years ago | (#30575588)

If you look at China's achievements, they are mainly construction achievements. They build massive skyscrapers (Shanghai for example, already has a 100 story building, and is in the middle of constructing a 128 story one). Any Chinese citizen living in a major city in China will brag about their city's skyscrapers, bridges, tunnels, subways, railways, etc. And, having visited a lot of those cities, I will admit they are really impressive.

The primary reason for this though, is that China is taking the massive amount of money flowing into the country and they're choosing to spend it on improving the economy through public works projects. Building skyscrapers, subways, etc. require lots of unskilled manpower, something that China has in abundance. Any problem, like digging a hole, laying pipe, or other manual labor tasks, that can be accomplished in greater scale by simply throwing raw manpower at it.... well, China is unsurpassed in its ability to throw raw manpower at something.

Why can infrastructure like this not be built in the U.S.? Because we don't have 300 million unskilled laborers who will work their ass off for a few bucks a day. We don't have a government that has the authority to just displace hundreds of people in order to build a subway station without going through a lot of red tape. In order to keep up with China in this area, we'd have to give up a lot of the values we treasure for the sake of progress, which is something most of us here on ./. wouldn't do.

You can like or hate the policies in China all you want, but it doesn't change the fact that their massive overpopulation of unskilled labor is getting employed and their infrastructure is developing extremely fast.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?