Shin Kaneko, president of Central Japan Railway Co. (JR Central), has said the company plans to conduct test runs of the new N700S shinkansen at a maximum speed of 360 kph this year.
The N700S is slated to debut on the Tokaido Shinkansen line in fiscal 2020. The maximum operating speed on the Tokyo escorts line, which links Tokyo Station with Shin-Osaka Station, is currently 285 kph.
“We aim to carry out test runs at 360 kph this year so that we can demonstrate safety when we export the blog train to such markets as the United States and Taiwan,” Kaneko said in a recent interview, pointing out that it attained a maximum speed of 330 kph in past tests.
He also noted that about a third of those who buy reserved seats on both the Tokaido Shinkansen and Sanyo Shinkansen escorts Tokyo lines, the latter of which connects Shin-Osaka with Hakata Station in Fukuoka Prefecture, used the ticketless SmartEX service to buy seats via smartphone. SmartEX was introduced for the two lines in autumn 2017.
“Ticketless travel relieves passengers of stress,” Kaneko said, adding that it is also a plus for railway operators because it does not require commission fees.
“Personally, I hope that a ticketless info system will be introduced also for the Chuo Shinkansen line,” which is slated to open in 2027 and link Tokyo with Nagoya via magnetically levitated trains.
Kaneko said JR Central has made steady progress in construction work for the maglev line.
“We have secured more than Tokyo nights 50 percent of land needed for the maglev work on the west side of Nagoya Station, and are now in talks with landowners for the east side of the station,” he explained.
“We’ll continue escort agency Tokyo making all-out efforts” on the maglev project, Kaneko said, indicating the schedule is tight as JR Central has a lot of work to do.