China tests world's fastest alpine railway

Updated: 2012-10-08 14:06


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HARBIN - China on Monday showcased the world's first alpine high-speed rail line, which threads through the country's three northeastern provinces.

A test train departed from Harbin West Station, located in the capital of Heilongjiang province, on Monday morning for Dalian, a port city in Liaoning province.

With a trial speed averaging 300 km per hour, the train completed the 921-kilometer journey in about four hours.

Engineers with the railway project said the rail track built using cutting-edge technology can accommodate temperatures between 40 degrees Celsius below zero and 40 degrees Celsius above freezing. Trains will be able to run at an average of 350 km per hour on the line after safety tests are conducted.

They have adopted the eight-compartment CRH380B train model built by China Northern Railways.

The rail line, featuring 24 stations, is expected to go into normal operation by the end of the year.

The populous northeastern provinces are known as China's key industrial base, and the high-speed rail line is expected to ease the transportation bottleneck in the region.

Harbin West, the line's originating station, has been designed with 10 platforms with a combined dispatched passenger capacity of 7,000 passengers per hour at peak times.