Magnetic levitation trains, or maglev trains, are trains which use electromagnetic suspension systems to levitate on steel rails, which essentially reduces friction and allows the train to reach very high speeds.
Paving the way for introducing levitation-based train systems (maglev trains), Indian Railways has floated a global tender inviting private entities for designing, building, operating and maintaining such train system on the public-private partnership model. The scope of work includes setting up a centre for levitation train technology, which will be jointly owned by the transporter.
Magnetic levitation trains, or maglev trains, are trains which use electromagnetic suspension systems to levitate on steel rails, which essentially reduces friction and allows the train to reach very high speeds. The transporter expects the developer to connect two major cities with levitation-based trains plying on an elevated corridor at the speed of 350-500 km per hour.
The levitation-based train is expected to carry passenger as well as cargo traffic. The land requirement for the project will be met by the transporter but all other works including building, designing, testing, operation, maintenance, and all other associated infrastructure works, will be carried out by the selected company. Currently, only China, Japan and South Korea have trains which run on levitation-based systems.
The project is part of the transporter’s overall plan to run high-speed (above 300 kmph) trains and semi-high-speed trains (above 160 kmph) along the golden quadrilateral. Indian Railways (IR) has already formed a company, National High Speed Rail Corporation of India, which is looking after the Mumbai-Ahmedabad bullet train project, which is expected to be operational in 2023-2024.
IR, as part of its project to develop high-speed and semi-high-speed corridors, has already introduced the Gatimaan Express, a semi-high-speed train, on the Delhi-Agra route.
The transporter is also in the final stages of introducing the Tejas, another semi-high-speed train, and is conducting trials for semi-high-speed compatible Talgo coaches that it will run on the Delhi-Mumbai route.