China Supersonic Train To Travel From Beijing To Paris In 3 Hours

China Supersonic Trains
Zhejiang Geely Holding Group and China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation will work together to build China’s supersonic trains.

(Photo: Geely Press Release)

Zhejiang Geely Holding Group announced on Nov. 6 that it signed an agreement with state-owned China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation that involved developing supersonic trains and other similar technologies. The agreement was announced at the 12th annual Zhuhai Airshow being held this week.

The supersonic trains to be developed will use a technology called Maglev, a magnetic levitation technology which eliminates ground fiction and has vacuum tubes which reduce air resistance. The supersonic trains are pegged to be China's future of transportation, providing safety, comfortable, environmentally-friendly but ultra-high-speed transportation.

Gao Hongwei, chairman at CASIC, said he imagines the supersonic train systems swooshing passengers from Beijing to Paris in three hours.

China has the most operational Maglev high-speed train technology in the world. With the technology, Geely hopes it could advance in the fields of new energy vehicles, automotive safety, and the use of new material science.

China's plan for supersonic trains is closely similar to the Hyperloop transport concepts being pursued by billionaires such as Tesla's Elon Musk and Virgin Group's Richard Branson. 

In October, Virgin Group announced a feasibility study on its Virgin Hyperloop One which found that travel time between Kansas City and St. Louis could be as little as 28 minutes compared to 3 hours at present. The fair between the two locations could also be lower than what travelers pay for their gas.

With Geely's venture in the development of the supersonic train, another billionaire joins the race of being the first to introduce the next generation of transportation.

Geely's billionaire chairman Li Shufu now explores supersonic trains aside from his ventures on low-orbit satellites and microchips used in cars and flying cars. In 2017, the billionaire announced the purchase of Terrafugia Inc., a startup planning to introduce a flying car by 2019. The company, founded by five graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, also has plans of the pioneering launch of vertical take-off and landing car by 2023.

Geely Holdings has invested billions on more than 20,000 research projects to strengthen its capabilities - from satellites, microchips, flying cars - in creating a three-dimensional digital transportation network covering land, sea, and air. 

Meanwhile, the agreement between Zhejiang Geely Holding Group and CASIC also include cooperating in developments of technology for intelligent manufacturing and commercial operations for the benefit of the latter. Together, the two entities will explore the future of manufacturing with industrial internet and smart supply chain.

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