'World's fastest bullet train' starts test runs in Japan
Nikkei -- May 10
The newest shinkansen bullet train from Japanese rail operator JR East begins test operation Friday, with its top speed expected to exceed the fastest now in service by at least 40 kph.

Green stripes grace the Alfa-X's bluish-silver body, featuring a 22-meter nose on the front car -- the longest for a shinkansen. JR East, formally East Japan Railway, previewed the full 250-meter, 10-car version for the media Thursday at a Miyagi Prefecture facility.

The 360 kph top speed bests the 320 kph of E5 series shinkansen currently running in Japan and TGV bullet trains in France.

The Alfa-X will be tested on the Tohoku shinkansen line between the cities of Sendai and Aomori in northeastern Japan. The trials will take place late at night approximately twice a week. The first phase, to gauge the feasibility of a 360 kph cruising speed, will run until fiscal 2021. Second-phase trials geared toward launching commercial operation will kick off the following year.

世界最速の時速360キロを目指し、試験走行が始まる次世代新幹線の車両が公開されました。 JR東日本が開発した次世代新幹線の試験車両「ALFA-X」の最大の特徴は先頭車両の「長い鼻」です。
News sources: Nikkei, ANNnewsCH
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