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Asia Today ISSN 1861-4604 Thursday, October 18, 2018

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Maglev train in Japan breaks world record at 590 kilometers per hour

Maglev operated by Central Japan Railway

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PHOTO CREDIT: BNN news

TOKYO -- A Japanese train line that uses magnetic charge to lift and move train cars broke a previous speed record on Thursday.

The magnetic levitation bullet train, or maglev operated by Central Japan Railway Co., reached 590 kilometers per hour. Its speed surpassed a previous record of 581 kilometers per hour set in December 2003 by the same firm, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Kyodo News reported the seven-car maglev train ran at the world's highest speed for 19 seconds, using new LO-series cars on a track between Uenohara and Fuefuki in Yamanashi Prefecture west of Tokyo.

The new record, however, may be beaten next week Tuesday, when another test ride may see the train run as fast as 600 kilometers per hour.

Passengers on Japan's train system, however, are not likely to experience the lightening test speeds even after 2027 when the maglev train lines are slated to open to the public.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to promote Japan's train technology during his visit to the United States, which will begin April 26.

Abe is scheduled to stop in California, a state with strong ties to the Asia-Pacific region that is planning a high-speed rail line modeled after similar lines in Japan and Europe.

On Tuesday U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Washington is working overtime ahead of Abe's visit.

South Korean newspaper Hankyoreh reported Blinken said he is looking forward to reaching an agreement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership with Japanese officials, and on revisions to the U.S.-Japan defense cooperation guidelines.

Japan has been delaying negotiations on the TPP.Elizabeth Shim> BNN

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