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Increasing the Speed of Shinkansen Trains

East Japan Railway Company

July 27, 2007

JR East has been proceeding with the development of its Shinkansen trains to improve our services to our customers. Since 2005, we have been making test runs with our "FASTECH360" high-speed Shinkansen test train, with the objectives of a higher maximum speed and enhanced reliability, environmental friendliness, and passenger riding comfort.

With respect to these objectives, JR East was able to obtain sufficient results from the test runs and will now manufacture a train for commercial Shinkansen service that will serve as a prototype for future mass production, in order to further increase the speed of our Shinkansen.

1. About the new prototype Shinkansen railcars

  • We will produce one ten-car Shinkansen train, built to specifications that will achieve a maximum operation speed of 320km/h, the highest in Japan.
  • Characteristics of the prototype commercial Shinkansen railcars are as follows.
    ( Please see Exhibit for details.  [PDF/150KB] )
    Environmental performance
    • Long-nose-shaped end cars
    • Bogie covers, smooth covers between cars, low noise pantographs
    Improved running performance and assurance of reliab
    • Main circuit system, pantographs, brake system
    Enhanced riding comfort
    • Full active suspension on all cars
    • Car body tilting system to improve riding comfort through curves

In addition, improved facilities and amenities for comfortable passenger spaces will be provided so that we can evaluate them fully prior to mass production.

2. Increasing the speed of Shinkansen trains

  • We plan to increase the speed of the Shinkansen by the end of fiscal year 2010, when we extend the Tohoku Shinkansen to Shin-Aomori station.
  • When we open this extension, we plan to introduce mass-production railcars whose design and features will be based on the prototype train that we are now proceeding to produce for commercial service.
  • Details such as specific speeds and the number of trains will be decided at this time, and we will also investigate the possibility of further staged increases in train speed.
  • We will make improvements to ground facilities for such measures as prevention of noise from adjacent tracks along with the proposed increase of Shinkansen speed.
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