A high-speed train with speed of 400km/h is set to be developed with Korea's own technology and unveiled by 2012 in the tradition of the Korean-style high-speed train with speed of 350km/h.
The Korea Railroad Research Institute (KRRI) announced on the 9th that it would launch a project to develop a high-speed train with speed of 400km/h (HEMU-400X) as part of an agreement between KRRI and Korea Institute of Construction & Transportation Evaluation and Planning (KICTEP), an affiliate of the Construction and Transportation Ministry, on the next-generation high-speed rail development project as a national R&D project of the ministry.
Around 30 Korean agencies are scheduled to participate in the project based on the outcomes of Korean-style high-speed train development for the next 6 years. It is a large-scale national project with total project cost of KRW 97.1 billion (government share: KRW 69.2 billion; private capital: KRW 27.9 billion).
According to KRRI, the high-speed train to be developed by 2012 uses an electric multiple unit (EMU) system that enables increasing the transportation volume. The load per axis is light; thus enabling the reduction of rail facilities maintenance expenses. Boasting of outstanding acceleration and deceleration performance, the EMU train is perfect for Korea given the short distances between its stations.
Once the 400km/h train is developed, approximately KRW 6.56 trillion in import substitution effect can be expected since the demand for about 1,600 railroad cars required for new high-speed trains planned after 2015 can be met by Korea's own technology.
In overseas rail markets valued at more than USD 30 billion, the technology competitiveness of Korea's rail industry can be upgraded to the level of France, Japan, and Germany. Such is expected to boost Korea's exports as well.
Ranked fifth in the world in terms of high-speed rail technology, Korea initiated the G7 high-speed electric train technology development project. Implementation is now at the stage of practicalization of EMU train with speed of 350km/h (see photo).
(Sept. 9, 2007, 15:11, Chosun.com)