The Olympic Games always ensure that the infrastructure in the host city is expanded. For the second time, Beijing benefits from this within a relatively short period of time. Because after the summer games in 2008, the Winter Games will take place in 2022 in the Chinese capital. In fact, many events are held in winter sports areas around the city of millions – including in the 175 kilometers from Zhangjiakou city in the Hebei region. In order to be able to transport athletes and spectators there as quickly as possible, a new high-speed railway line has now been inaugurated. The special feature: The trains should reach speeds of more than 300 kilometers per hour and drive completely autonomously. For this, a system called "Automatic Train Operating" is used.

Image: MNXANL [CC BY-SA 4.0 (]from Wikimedia Commons

A train driver is scheduled to ride for ten years

The engineers were already able to gather their first experience. So the technology has been used for some time on some subway lines. In southeastern China, two trains were also equipped with the system. Here, the trains only reach speeds of up to 200 kilometers per hour. The Beijing-Zhangjiakou route thus sets a new speed record for autonomous trains in regular operation. In the past three months, the China Railway Corporation has also tested the autonomous high-speed trains on existing routes – but without passengers. The test runs were according to official information without problems. For safety reasons, however, a driver will still be on board to intervene in an emergency. Only after a transitional period of ten years, this human component should be eliminated.

China owns the world's largest high-speed train network

The autonomous trains originate from the Fuxing series, which is interesting for another reason. Because the trains were completely developed for the first time in China. Unlike in the past, this is not a remodeled technology from abroad. This is in line with the requirements of the Chinese government, which has instructed the economy to increasingly develop its own development skills. The demand for high-speed trains is huge in China anyway. Already, the country has the largest route network for express trains worldwide. In addition, numerous new construction projects have already been decided upon for the next few years. In the future, goods transports will increasingly be relocated to rail. The reason: The diesel trucks were identified as a reason for the bad air in many Chinese cities.

Via: Global Times

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