China launches world’s fastest train that can reach 600km/h and ‘levitates’

China's new bullet train is reportedly the world's fastest ground vehicle reaching a whopping 373mph (600km/h).

The maglev train can cover the distance of London to Edinburgh in less than an hour.

It literally flies passengers from city to city faster than a plane as the train levitates above the tracks, news.com.au reports.

The locomotive achieves record speeds using electromagnets that propel the carriages forward with minimal friction.

It was developed by China and built in the coastal city of Qingdao. Its launch was announced by Chinese state media on Tuesday.

The state-of-the-art train has reportedly just beaten the Japanese record set of 603kmph about six years ago.

A Japan Railway maglev train achieved the top speed on an experimental track in Yamanashi in 2015.

China's new maglev train was developed by state-owned China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation.

Deputy general manager and chief engineer Liang Jianying said it also emitted lower levels of noise pollution and required less maintenance than other high-speed trains.

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The UK meanwhile has trains moving as slow as a horse and cart.

Trains in northern England have been recorded moving at an average speed of 16mph due to congestion.

The fastest trains in the country is currently EuroStar which reaches 199mph.

HS2 trains are set to go at up to 225mph with the first phase between London and Birmingham currently under construction.

  • New 373mph bullet train could travel from London to Paris in 34 minutes

China's new maglev can travel the 1000km distance between Beijing and Shanghai in just two-and-a-half hours – a journey that normally takes three hours by air and five-and-a-half hours by high-speed rail.

The country has been using electromagnetic force technology in trains on a limited scale for almost two decades.

While trains on the Beijing-Shanghai line currently have a maximum operating speed of 350km/h, a high-speed maglev running at 600km/h could narrow the gap between high-speed rail and commercial aircraft, which typically cruise at 900km/h.

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There are no intercity or inter-province lines in China yet, but cities are doing research into how to take advantage of the high-speed possibilities. Shanghai has a short maglev line running from one of its airports to town, Reuters reports.

Japan and Germany have also been looking at how to build maglev train networks with compatibility with existing train networks remaining a stumbling block.

Japan is now building a new Chuo Shinkansen maglev line between Tokyo and Nagoya, with trains set to hit top speeds of about 500km/h. It is scheduled to be completed in 2027.

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