China tests 500 km/h super high-speed train
Mon, Dec 26, 2011, 5:39 PM EST
BEIJING (Reuters) - China launched a super-rapid test train over the weekend which is capable of travelling 500 kilometers per hour, state media said on Monday, as the country moves ahead with its railway ambitions despite serious problems on its high-speed network.
The train, made by a subsidiary of CSR Corp Ltd, China's largest train maker, is designed to resemble an ancient Chinese sword, the official Xinhua news agency reported.
It "will provide useful reference for current high-speed railway operations," it quoted train expert Shen Zhiyun as saying.
But future Chinese trains will not necessarily run at such high speeds, CSR chairman Zhao Xiaogang told the Beijing Morning News.
"We aims to ensure the safety of trains operation," he said.
China's railway industry has had a tough year, highlighted by a collision between two high-speed trains in July which killed at least 40 people. Construction of new high-speed trains in China has since been a near halt.
In February, the railways minister, Liu Zhijun, a key figure behind the boom in the sector, was dismissed over corruption charges that have not yet been tried in court.
(Reporting by Sabrina Mao and Ben Blanchard; Editing by Yoko Nishikawa)