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This is a list of the world's railway operating companies listed alphabetically by continent and country. This list includes companies operating both now and in the past. Note also that in some countries, the railway operating bodies are not companies, but are government departments or authorities. Particularly in Europe, with privatizations in the 1980s and the separation of the track ownership and management from running the trains, there are now many track-only companies and train-only companies. Africa Railway unions
Union of African Railways (UAR) Southern African Railway Association (SARA), which represents:
CFB (Benguela railway, in Angola) Botswana Railways Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique (CFM) (Mozambique Railway) Malawi Railways TransNamib Swaziland Railway TAZARA (Tanzania/Zambia Railway Authority) Zambia Railways National Railways of Zimbabwe Tanzania Railways Corporation Central East African Railway in Malawi Beitbridge Bulawayo Railway Metrorail (South Africa) Spoornet (South-Africa)
Algerian Railways (SNTF) Angola Benguela Railway Moçâmedes Railway Luanda Railway Gunza-Gabala line
Benin Railways (OCBN) Botswana Botswana Railways (BR)
Abidjan-Niger Railway (SITARAIL)
Abidjan-Niger Railway (SITARAIL)
Cameroon National Railways Authority (REGIFERCAM)
Republic of the Congo
Congo-Ocean Railway (CFCO)
Democratic Republic of the Congo (formerly Zaire) Due to civil war, a good portion of the railway system of the Dem Rep of Congo is not presently functioning)
Congo Railway (CNC) Matadi-Kinshasa Railway
Imperial Railway Company of Ethiopia
Imperial Railway Company of Ethiopia
Gabon State Railways (OCTRA)
Ghana Railways & Ports (GRP) (Ghana's rail system is largely derelict) Ghana Railway Company
Kenya Railways Rift Valley Railways Consortium
South African Railways (SAS/SAR)
Bong Mining Co Lamgo JV Operating Co
Malawi Railways (Central East African Railway)
Office National des Chemins de Fer (ONCF) : national railway office.
Mozambique State Railways Beira Railroad Corporation
Nigerian Railway Corporation
Cape Government Railways Central South African Railways Gautrain (Modern High Speed Trains) Metrorail Natal Government Railways Netherlands-South African Railway Company Shosholoza Meyl South African Railways (SAS/SAR) Transnet Freight Rail
Sudan Railways Gezira Light Railway
Tanzania Railways Corporation TAZARA Railway
Togo Railways (RCFT) Although Togo has railways in place, no trains have run on them for many
Tunisian National Railways (SNCFT)
Rift Valley Railways Consortium Uganda Railways Corporation
Zambia Railways TAZARA Railway Mulobezi Railway Maamba Colliery Railway Njanji Commuter Line
National Railways of Zimbabwe Beitbridge Bulawayo Railway
(There are no railways in Burundi, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Equatorial Guinea, The Gambia, GuineaBissau, Mauritius, Niger, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Seychelles, and Somalia.) Asia Afghanistan
(Afghanistan has only 24.6 km of railway which are railheads from
neighbouring countries). Iran and Turkmenistan plan to help Afghanistan build a rail network that would enable Iran and Turkey to link up with Central Asia.  Bangladesh
Union of Burma Railways
People's Republic of China
MTR Corporation Limited Kowloon-Canton Railway Corporation
(Its network is currently operated by the MTR Corporation Limited under a 50year service concession since 2007.)
Peak Tramways Company Limited Hong Kong Tramways Limited Ocean Park Corporation India
Indian Railways Delhi Metro Kolkata Metro Konkan Railway Corporation Limited (Konkan Railway) Hind Terminals Pvt Ltd.
PT Kereta Api (Persero)
Islamic Republic of Iran Railways RAJA
Iraqi Republic Railways (IRR)
Israel Railways Carmelit - the world's smallest subway system, in Haifa CityPass, constructing and soon to be operating the Jerusalem Light Rail MTS group, tender winner for the Tel Aviv Light Rail
Japan Further information: List of railway companies in Japan and List of defunct railway companies in Japan Jordan
Hedjaz Jordan Railway Aqaba Railway Corporation
Qazaqstan Temir Zholy (Kazakhstan railways)
Korail AREX Busan Transportation Corporation Daegu Metropolitan Subway Corporation Daejeon Express Transti Corporation Gwangju Metropolitan Rapid Transit Corporation Incheon Rapid Transit Corporation Korail Seoul Metro Seoul Metro Line 9 Seoul Metropolitan Rapid Transit Corporation Shin Bundang Line Corporation Yongin Light Rail Corporation Korea Rail Network Authority
DPRK Department of Railroad
Lebanon State Railways
Keretapi Tanah Melayu (Malaysian Railway) RapidKL Light Rail Transit in Kuala Lumpur Express Rail Link Sdn. Bhd. KL Monorail
Nepal Government Railway Janakpur Railway
Pakistan Railways (PR) Karachi Circular Railway (KCR)
Philippine National Railways Light Rail Transit Authority (Manila LRT) Metro Rail Transit Corporation (Manila MRT) Mindanao Railway Authority Panay Railways
Saudi Railways Organization
SBS Transit (North-East Line, Sengkang & Punggol LRT)
SMRT Corporation (East-West Line, North-South Line, Circle Line, Bukit Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (Changi Airport Skytrain) Wildlife Reserves Singapore (Jurong Bird Park Panorail) Sentosa Development Corporation (Sentosa Express)
Sri Lanka Government Railway
Syrian Railways Hedjaz Railway
Taiwan (Republic of China)
Taiwan Railway Administration Taiwan High Speed Rail Corporation Taipei Rapid Transit Corporation Kaohsiung Rapid Transit Corporation
State Railway of Thailand Bangkok Skytrain (BTS, Bangkok Mass Transit: sky train operator) Bangkok Metro (BMCL, Bangkok Metro Company Limited: underground train
Oceania Australia Main articles: List of Australian railway companies and List of former Australian railway companies
See also: Rail transport in Australia New Zealand
New Zealand Railways Department NZR or NZGR (to 1981) New Zealand Railways Corporation (Now trading as ONTRACK) New Zealand Rail Limited (Defunct, renamed Tranz Rail in 1996) Tranz Rail (Defunct, brought out by Toll Holdings in 2003) Toll Rail Veolia (New Zealand) Taieri Gorge Railway Dun Mountain Railway (to 1870s) Kaitangata Line (to 1970) New Zealand Midland Railway Company (to 1890s) Sanson Tramway (to 1945) Wellington and Manawatu Railway Company (to 1908)
HSH (Albanian Railways - Hekurudha Shqiptare)
ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways - Österreichische Bundesbahnen, till 1938 StLB (Styrian Provincial Railways - Steiermärkische MBS (Montafonerbahn Schruns, from Bludenz to Schruns) de:Montafonerbahn GKB (Graz-Köflacher Eisenbahn) de:Graz-Köflacher Eisenbahn LTE (Logistik- und Transport GmbH) de:Logistik- und Transport GmbH
Landesbahnen) de:Steiermärkische Landesbahnen
Belarusian Railway - Belarusian: БЧ, Беларуская
Чыгунка, Russian: Белорусская железная дорога Belarusian Railway website
NMBS/SNCB (Belgian National Railways - Nationale Maatschappij der
Belgische Spoorwegen / Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Belges), abbreviated in Dutch/French.
Dillen & Le Jeune Cargo NV
ŽFBH (Railways of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina - Željeznice ŽRS (Railways of Republika Srpska - Željeznice Republike Srpske)
Federacije Bosne i Hercegovine)
BDZh (Bulgarian State Railways - Български Държавни Железници,
Bălgarski Dărzhavni Zheleznitsi) Croatia
HŽ (Croatian Railways - Hrvatske željeznice)
SŽDC (Správa železniční dopravní cesty, s.o. - Railway Infrastructure ČD (České dráhy, a.s. - Czech Railways) ČDC (ČD Cargo, a.s.) JHMD (Jindřichohradecké místní dráhy - Jindřichův Hradec Local Railways) CXM (Connex Morava, a.s.) ODOS (Ostravská dopravní společnost, a.s.) OKDD (OKD, Doprava, a.s.) RTT (Railtransport, s.r.o.) UNIDO (Unipetrol Doprava, a.s.) VIA (Viamont, a.s.) CZL (CZ Logistics, s.r.o.)
Administration, state organization)
DSB (Danish State Railways - Danske Statsbaner) Arriva Danmark GDS/HFHJ (Gribskovbanen / Hillerød-Frederiksværk-Hundested Jernbane) HHJ (Odderbanen (Hads-Ning Herreders Jernbane)) HL (Capital City Local Railways - Hovedstadens Lokalbaner) HTJ/OHJ (Høng-Tølløse Jernbane / Odsherreds Jernbane) LJ (Lollandsbanen) LN (Lille Nord) LNJ (Lyngby-Nærum Jernbane) NJ (North Jutland Railways - Nordjyske Jernbaner) ØSJS (Eastern Railway - Østbanen (Østsjællandske Jernbaneselskab)) VLTJ (Lemvigbanen (Vemb-Lemvig-Thyborøn Jernbane)). A popular song VNJ (Western Railway - Vestbanen (Varde-Nørre Nebel Jernbane))
about the railway by Danish band Tørfisk is simply called VLTJ.
CoalTerminalTrans Coal train operator to Muuga coal terminal (28.05.2006Edelaraudtee South-West Railway (passenger and freight; 1996-) Eesti Vabariigi Raudtee (EVR) Estonian Railways - Eesti Raudtee (privatized Elektriraudtee Electric Railway (Tallinn suburban passenger railway) (1998-) Go Rail (named EVR Ekspress until 2006) Operator of the Tallinn–Moscow Põlevkivi Raudtee Coal train operator to Narva Power Plants Raudteeinspektsioon (formerly Raudteeamet) Estonian Railway Inspectorate Spacecom Freight train operator (2004-) Westgate Transport (Transoil) Freight train operator
2001, re-nationalized 2006-2007)
passenger service (1998-)
VR (VR Ltd—VR Oy) Proxion Train Oy Teollisuuden Raideliikenne Oy Pääkaupunkiseudun Junakalusto Oy
Chemins de Fer de Provence (CFP) (operating 1,000 mm (3 ft 3 3⁄8 in) metre Euro Cargo Rail Eurotunnel SNCF (French National Railways - Société Nationale des Chemins de fer
gauge trains Nice-Digne)
Français) Chemins de fer de l'Est Chemin de Fer de l'État Chemins de Fer de l'Ouest Chemin de Fer du Nord Chemins de fer de Paris à Lyon et à la Méditerranée Chemin de Fer de Paris à Orléans et du Midi
RATP (Paris Transport Authority - Régie Autonome des Transports Parisiens)
Germany *Deutsche Bahn (DB AG - German Railways 1992-) de:Liste deutscher Eisenbahngesellschaften Passenger railways
ABELLIO - ABELLIO GmbH de:Abellio Rail ABG - Anhaltische Bahn Gesellschaft mbH de:Dessau-Wörlitzer EisenbahnAKN - AKN Eisenbahn AG de:AKN Eisenbahn ALEX - Allgäu-Express de:Allgäu-Express AVG - Albtal-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft mbH de:Albtal-Verkehrs-Gesellschaft BBG - Bahnbetriebsgesellschaft Stauden mbH BKD - Borkumer Kleinbahn und Dampfschiffahrt GmbH de:Borkumer
BLB - Burgenlandbahn GmbH de:Burgenlandbahn BayOB - Bayerische Oberlandbahn GmbH Bayerische Oberlandbahn BOB - Bodensee-Oberschwaben-Bahn GmbH de:Bodensee-OberschwabenBSB - Breisgau-S-Bahn-Gesellschaft de:Breisgau-S-Bahn BSEG - Brohltal Schmalspur-Eisenbahn Betriebs-GmbH BVO - Busverkehr Ober- und Westerzgebirge Bahn GmbH BZB - Bayerische Zugspitzbahn AG de:Bayerische Zugspitzbahn CBC - City Bahn Chemnitz GmbH de:Chemnitzer VerkehrsChiemsee-Bahn de:Chiemsee-Bahn CS - Connex Sachsen GmbH de:Connex Sachsen DBG - Döllnitzbahn GmbH  Drachenfelsbahn - Bergbahnen im Siebengebirge AG EGB - DBAG Erzgebirgsbahn de:Erzgebirgsbahn EIB - Erfurter Industriebahn GmbH de:Erfurter Bahn Eurobahn - Rhenus Keolis GmbH & Co. KG de:Eurobahn EVB - Eisenbahnen und Verkehrsbetriebe Elbe-Weser GmbH de:Eisenbahnen FEG - Freiberger Eisenbahngesellschaft mbH de:Freiberger Eisenbahn FKE - Frankfurt-Königsteiner Eisenbahn AG de:Frankfurt-Königsteiner FME - Franconian Museum Railway e.V. de:Fränkische Museums-Eisenbahn GVG - Georgs-Verkehrs-GmbH HEX - HarzElbeExpress (Connex Sachsen-Anhalt GmbH) de:ConnexHLB - Hessische Landesbahn GmbH de:Hessische Landesbahn HSB - Harzer Schmalspurbahnen HSB - Heidelberger Straßen- und Bergbahn AG HTB - Hellertalbahn GmbH de:Hellertalbahn HzL - Hohenzollerische Landesbahn AG de:Hohenzollerische Landesbahn IL - Inselbahn Langeoog Inselbahn Langeoog KHB - DBAG Kurhessenbahn de:Kurhessenbahn KML - Kreisbahn Mansfelder Land GmbH
Aktiengesellschaft & de:Verkehrsverbund Mittelsachsen
und Verkehrsbetriebe Elbe-Weser
MBB - Mecklenburgische Bäderbahn Molli GmbH de:Mecklenburgische ME - Metronom Eisenbahngesellschaft mbB de:Metronom MeBa - Mecklenburg Bahn GmbH NB - NordseeBahn de:NordseeBahn NBE - Nordbahn Eisenbahngesellschaft mbH de:Nordbahn (SchleswigNEB - Niederbarnimer Eisenbahn de:Niederbarnimer Eisenbahn NEG - NEG Niebüll mbH (former NVAG) de:Norddeutsche NOB - Nord-Ostsee-Bahn de:Nord-Ostsee-Bahn NWB - NordWestBahn de:NordWestBahn OBS - DBAG Oberweißbacher Berg- und Schwarzatalbahn de:Oberweißbacher ODEG - Ostdeutsche Eisenbahn GmbH de:Ostdeutsche Eisenbahn OEG - Oberrheinische Eisenbahngesellschaft AG de:Oberrheinische Eisenbahn OLA - Ostseeland-Verkehr GmbH (former MeBa/OME) de:Ostseeland Verkehr OPB - Oberpfalzbahn de:Oberpfalzbahn OSB - Ortenau-S-Bahn de:Ortenau-S-Bahn PEG - Prignitzer Eisenbahn-Gesellschaft de:Prignitzer Eisenbahn RBG - Regental Bahnbetriebe GmbH ("Länderbahn") Regentalbahn RBK - Regionalbahn Kassel GmbH de:Regionalbahn Kassel Regio-Bahn GmbH RHB - Rhein-Haardt-Bahn GmbH de:Rhein-Haardt-Bahn RNV - Rhein-Neckar-Verkehr GmbH de:Rhein-Neckar-Verkehr RTB - Rurtalbahn GmbH & Co. KG (former DKB) de:Rurtalbahn RüKB - Rügensche Kleinbahn GmbH & Co. Saarbahn GmbH de:Saarbahn GmbH S-Bahn Berlin GmbH SBB - Schweizerische Bundesbahn GmbH SBE - Sächsisch-Böhmische Eisenbahn de:Sächsisch-Böhmische SHB - Schleswig-Holstein-Bahn GmbH de:Schleswig-Holstein-Bahn
Eisenbahngesellschaft mbH (?)
Berg- und Schwarzatalbahn
SHG - S-Bahn Hamburg GmbH SOB - DBAG SüdostBayernBahn de:SüdostBayernBahn SOEG - Sächsisch-Oberlausitzer SSB - Stuttgarter Straßenbahnen AG de:Stuttgarter Straßenbahnen STB - Süd-Thüringen Bahn de:Süd-Thüringen Bahn STE - Strausberger Eisenbahn GmbH de:Strausberger Eisenbahn GmbH SWEG - Südwestdeutsche Verkehrs AG de:Südwestdeutsche Verkehrs AG TDR - Trans regio Deutsche Regionalbahn GmbH de:Trans regio TE - Trossinger Eisenbahn de:Trossinger Eisenbahn UBB - Usedomer Bäderbahn de:Usedomer Bäderbahn VBG - Vogtlandbahn GmbH de:Vogtlandbahn VBK - Verkehrsbetriebe Karlsruhe GmbH de:Verkehrsbetriebe Karlsruhe vectus - Vectus Verkehrsgesellschaft de:Vectus VIAS - VIAS GmbH (Odenwald-Bahn) de:VIAS GmbH WB - WestfalenBahn de:WestfalenBahn WEBA - Westerwaldbahn GmbH de:Westerwaldbahn des Kreises Altenkirchen WEG - Württembergische Eisenbahn-Gesellschaft de:Württembergische Wendelsteinbahn GmbH de:Wendelsteinbahn WFB - DBAG WestFrankenBahn de:WestFrankenBahn ??? - Zahnradbahn, Stuttgart
Eisenbahngesellschaft mbH de:Verkehrsverbund Oberlausitz-Niederschlesien
Historic state railways
Deutsche Bundesbahn (DB - German Federal Railways) Deutsche Reichsbahn (DR - East German Railways) Deutsche Reichsbahn-Gesellschaft (DRB - German State Railways 1920-45)
OSE (Greek Railways Organization - Οργανισμός Σιδηροδρόμων Ελλάδας,
Organismós Sidirodrómon Elládas)
Piraeus, Athens and Peloponnese Railways (SPAP), absorbed by the
former Hellenic State Railways in 1962. Hungary
MÁV (Hungarian State Railways - Magyar Államvasutak) MMV (Hungarian Private Railways Limited - Magyar Magánvasút Zrt.) Floyd Kft (Hungarian private rail undertaking) GySEV/ROeEE (Győr-Sopron-Ebenfurth Railway - Győr-Sopron-Ebenfurti
Vasút / Raab-Oedenburg-Ebenfurter Eisenbahn - Hungaro-Austrian regional railway company) Iceland
Apart from a short line used in the construction of Reykjavik harbour in the
early 20th century, there have never been any railways in Iceland. Ireland
Iarnród Éireann - Irish Rail, part of Córas Iompair Éireann (CIÉ)
Alifana, operates, also as Metrocampania Nordest, in FAL, operates in Basilicata and Calabria regions Metropolitana di Roma, Metro or Subway in Rome FCU, operates in Umbria region Ferrovia Circumetnea, narrow-gauge line around the vulcano Etna Ferrovia del Bernina, railway of Bernina mounts Ferrovia Genova-Casella, narrow-gauge line in Genoa Ferrovie del Gargano, operates in northern Puglia region Ferrovie della Calabria, operates in Calabria region Ferrovie della Sardegna, operates in almost all Sardinia region FS, Italian State Railways Ferrovie del Sud Est, operates in central and southern Puglia region
northern Campania region
FER, operates trains in Emilia Romagna region FNM, operates trains in Lombardy and Piedmont FUC, operates Ferrovia Udine-Cividale in Friuli region GTT, operates in Turin metropolitan area LFI, operates in Tuscany region Le Nord (passenger division of FNM) Met.Ro., operates Ferrovia Roma-Viterbo Sangritana, operates in Abruzzo region Sepsa, operates as Ferrovia Cumana and Ferrovia SFSM, operates as Ferrovia Circumvesuviana narrow-gauge lines Sistemi Territoriali, operates in Veneto region TFT (Passenger division of LFI) Trenitalia (Passenger division of FS) Trentino trasporti (railway Ferrovia Trento-Malè and bus company in the
Circumflegrea in Naples metropolitan area
in Naples metropolitan area
Province of Trento) Kosovo
Kosovo Railways (Kosovo Railways J.S.C - Hekurudhat e Kosovës Sh.A -
Kosovske Železnice D.D.) Latvia
LDz (Latvian Railway - Latvijas dzelzceļš)
Pasažieru Vilciens (Passenger Train)
LG (Lithuanian Railways - Lietuvos geležinkeliai) ASG (Aukštaitija narrow gauge railways - Aukštaitijos siaurasis geležinkelis)
CFL (Luxembourg Railways - Chemins de Fer Luxembourgeois)
MZ (Macedonian Railways - Makedonski Zeleznici)
CFM (Moldovan Railway - Calea Ferată din Moldova)
SNCF (French National Railways - Société Nationale des Chemins de fer
Railways of Montenegro (Railways of Montenegro - Željeznica Crne Gore)
NS (Dutch Railways - Nederlandse Spoorwegen) Arriva Netherlands Syntus Veolia Transport Connexxion NS Hispeed
A few Dutch railway stations are served, even for journeys within the country, by foreign railway companies under the responsibility of NS; these companies are:
DB Regio, including DB Regionalbahn Westfalen and DB Euregiobahn Prignitzer Eisenbahn (part of Arriva Germany)
Cargo operators in Holland
ACTS Rail4Chem Captrain Veolia transport The Netherlands
ERS Railways Rotterdam Rail Feeding PortFeeders Railion / DB Schenker
There are also a couple of Train Charter company's active in Holland;
EETC - Alpen Express - Skitrein - Skitrein Disco - Auto Slaaptrein RailInsight
Norges Statsbaner (NSB, Norwegian State Railways) Jernbaneverket (infrastructure) CargoNet Chr. Salvesen & Chr. Thams's Communications Aktieselskab (defunct) Flytoget (Airport Express Train to Oslo Airport, Gardermoen) Hector Rail Malmtrafikk Norsk Hydro (defunct) NSB Anbud Ofotbanen SJ
Koleje Mazowieckie — (Rail Mazovia)
PKP (Polish State Railways — Polskie Koleje Państwowe SA)
PKP Cargo PKP Intercity PKP LHS (broad-gauge line operator) PKP PLK (infrastructure)
Przewozy Regionalne Szybka Kolej Miejska (Tricity) (Szybka Kolej Miejska — S-Bahn type service in Szybka Kolej Miejska (Warsaw) Warszawska Kolej Dojazdowa Arriva PCC — Consortium of PCC Rail and Arriva Polska won auction of
Poland's Tricity, Poland region)
passenger rail service on diesel lines in Kuyavian-Pomeranian Voivodship for 3 years (from December 2007)
CTL Logistics Lotos Kolej Orlen KolTrans PCC Rail
PCC Rail Rybnik PCC Śląskie Linie Kolejowe (infrastructure)
Trakcja Polska SA (Building Company)
CP (Portuguese Railways - Caminhos de ferro portugueses); Since 2004: Fertagus (Portuguese Private Railway Operator) Takargo (In partnership with COMSA)
Portuguese Trains - Comboios de Portugal
Căile Ferate Române - State Railway Company Grup Feroviar Român Unifertrans Servtrans Regiotrans
Cargo Trans Vagon CTF SAAF Constantin Group Rail Force Sudarec RollingStock Dori Trans CET Suceava CET Brasov Termocentrala Deva-Mintia AZOMURES Bega Group CefMur Electro Comp Iasi Vitrometan Medias Remarul 16 Februarie Transferoviar Grup Via Terra Softrans Transcombi Suradec Trans Expedition Feroviar SET CFR Trans blue Classfer Metrorex - Bucharest rapid transit RAT - Public transport including trams and light rail
RZhD (Russian Railways - Российские железные дороги, Rossiskiye
ŽS (Serbian Railways - Železnice Srbije) Beovoz Belgrade Underground railway
ŽSR (Železnice Slovenskej Republiky - The Railways of the Slovak Republic, ZSSK (Železničná Spoločnosť Slovensko, a.s., passenger transport operator) ZSSKC (Železničná Spoločnosť Cargo Slovakia, a.s., freight transport BRKS (Bratislavská regionálna koľajová spoločnosť, a.s.) LTE (LTE Logistik a Transport Slovakia s.r.o.) SŽDS (Slovenská železničná dopravná spoločnosť, a.s.)
SŽ (Slovenian Railways - Slovenske železnice) Adria Transport, First private railway company in Slovenia de:Adria Transport
RENFE (Spanish National Railway Network - Red Nacional de los Ferrocarriles FEVE (Narrow Gauge Railways - Ferrocarriles de Vía Estrecha) EuskoTren (Basque Railways - Eusko Trenbideak) FGC (Catalonian Government Railways - Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat de FGV (Valencian Government Railways - Ferrocarrils de la Generalitat FS (Sóller Railway - Ferrocarril de Sóller) SFM (Majorcan Railway Services - Serveis Ferroviaris de Mallorca) LOGITREN (Valencian Privat company)
Arlanda Express Bergslagernas Järnvägar BK Tåg Connex Tåg Green Cargo Hector Rail AB SJ (State Railways - Statens Järnvägar) Tågkompaniet
Switzerland See also: Swiss railroads, List of railway companies in Switzerland
AB (Appenzeller Bahnen, de:Appenzeller Bahnen)
RHB (Rorschach-Heiden-Bahn) TB (Trogenerbahn, de:Trogenerbahn)
ASm (Aare Seeland mobil) de:Aare Seeland mobil BC (Blonay-Chamby) BDWM (BDWM Transport AG), merger of
BD (Bremgarten-Dietikon-Bahn) WM (Wohlen-Meisterschwanden-Bahn)
BLM (Bergbahn Lauterbrunnen-Mürren) BLS (BLS AG), merger of
BLS (Bern - Lötschberg - Simplon bahn) RM (Regionalverkehr Mittelland AG de:Regionalverkehr Mittelland) EBT (Emmental-Burgdorf-Thun Bahn de:Emmental-BurgdorfThun-Bahn)
BLT (Baselland Transport, de:Baselland Transport) BOB (Berner Oberland Bahnen), also owns
SPB (Schynige Platte Bahn)
BRB (Brienz Rothorn Bahn) BVB (Basler Verkehrs-Betriebe) CIS (Cisalpino), Train operating company CJ (Chemins de fer du Jura de:Chemins de fer du Jura) Db (Dolderbahn, Zürich)
DFB (Dampfbahn Furka-Bergstrecke) DVZO (Dampfbahnverein Zürcher Oberland), preserved line ex-SBB FART (Ferrovie autolinee regionali ticinesi) FB (Forchbahn) FLP (Ferrovia Lugano-Ponte Tresa) FW (Frauenfeld-Wil-Bahn de:Frauenfeld-Wil-Bahn) GGB (Gornergrat-Monte Rosa-Bahnen) JB (Jungfraubahn) KLB (Kriens-Luzern-Bahn), short freight line until Dec 2009, remaining LEB (Chemin de fer Lausanne-Echallens-Bercher) LO (Métro Lausanne-Ouchy) MBC (Transports de la région Morges-Bière-Cossonay), was before
infrastructure to Zentralbahn
BAM (Chemin de fer Bière-Apples-Morges de:Chemin de fer Bière-
MG (Monte Generoso Railway) MGB (Matterhorn-Gotthard-Bahn) (merger between FO and BVZ)
BVZ (BVZ Zermatt-Bahn ex Brig - Visp - Zermatt Bahn) FO (Furka-Oberalp-Bahn)
MIB (Meiringen-Innertkirchen Bahn), owned by KWO (Kraftwerke Oberhasli) MOB (Chemin de fer Montreux-Oberland Bernois) MVR (Transports Montreux-Vevey-Riviera (MVR), de:Transports Montreux
Vevey-Riviera (merger of MTGN, CEV and some cable cars)) CEV (Chemins de fer électriques Veveysans) MGN (Montreux-Glion-Rochers de Naye)
NStCM (Chemin de fer Nyon-St-Cergue-Morez de:Chemin de fer Nyon-Saint OeBB (Oensingen-Balsthal-Bahn) PB (Pilatusbahn) RB (Rigi-Bahnen)
VRB (Vitznau-Rigi-Bahn (see Rigi-Bahnen))
RBS (Regionalverkehr Bern-Solothurn, de:Regionalverkehr Bern-Solothurn) RhB (Rhätische Bahn / Viafier retica) RiT (Riffelalp Tramway)
SBB-CFF-FFS (Swiss Federal Railways - Schweizerische Bundesbahnen SEFT (Società Esercizio Ferroviario Turistico operating Ferrovia Mesolcinese) SOB (Schweizerische Südostbahn AG de:Schweizerische Südostbahn)
Chemins de fer fédéraux - Ferrovie federali svizzere)
BT (Bodensee Toggenburg Bahn)
ST (Sursee-Triengen railway) SVB (Städtische Verkehrsbetriebe Bern, "Bernmobil", de:Bernmobil) SZU (Sihltal Zürich Uetliberg Bahn) THURBO (THURBO), passenger operation, also successor of
MThB (Mittelthurgau-Bahn) MC (Martigny-Châtelard de:Martigny-Châtelard-Bahn) MO (Martigny-Orsières)
TMR (Transports de Martigny et Régions)
TN (Transports publics du littoral neuchatelois) TPC (Transports Publics du Chablais (merger of AL, AOMC, ASD and VB)
AL (Aigle-Leysin Bahn (see TPC)) AOMC (Aigle-Ollon-Monthey-Champéry (see TPC)) ASD (Aigle-Sépey-Diablerets (see TPC)) BVB (Bex-Villars-Bretaye) (see TPC) GFM (Chemins der fer Fribourgeios (Gruyére-Friburg-Morat))
TPF (Transports publics Fribourgeois)
TPG (Transports Publics Genevois) TRAVYS (Transports Vallée de Joux - Yverdon-les-Bains - Ste-Croix)
OC (Orbe-Chavornay) PBr (Chemin de fer Pont-Brassus) YSC (Chemin de fer Yverdon - Ste-Croix)
TRN (TRN SA for "Transports publics neuchâtelois") TSOL (société du tramway du sud-ouest lausannois S.A.) VBG (Verkehrsbetriebe Glattal) VBZ (Verkehrsbetriebe Zürich) WAB (Wengernalpbahn) WB (Waldenburgerbahn, de:Waldenburgerbahn) WSB (Wynental- und Suhrentalbahn)
ZB Zentralbahn (2005 merger of the Luzern-Stans-Engelberg
Bahn and SBB Bruenigbahn) LSE (Luzern-Stans-Engelberg-Bahn)
Turkish State Railways (TCDD - Turkiye Cumhuriyeti Devlet Demiryolları) İstanbul Ulaşım A.Ş. İzban A.Ş.
UZ (Ukrainian Railway - Укрзалізниця, Ukrzaliznytsya)
Eurotunnel See List of companies operating trains in the United Kingdom. London Underground Northern Ireland Railways British Rail (1948–1996) List of British heritage and private railways
FS, Italian State Railways Trenitalia (Passenger division of FS)
North America Canada Further information: List of Canadian railways Mexico Further information: List of Mexican railroads and List of defunct Mexican railroads United States [show]
v•d•e Amtrak South America and Central America Argentina
List of United States railroads by political divisio
Ferrocarriles Argentinos (FA) (Argentine Railways - privatized in 1993 and
broken up into several enterprises): Freight operators
Railroad Development Corporation or América Latina Logística -
(ALL)  Operates the former San Martín (ALL Central1,676 mm (5 ft 6 in) Broad gauge) and Urquiza (ALL Mesopotámica 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) Standard gauge) divisions of FA.
Belgrano Cargas - (BC) Operates the former Belgrano division of the FA. Ferrosur Roca - (FR)  Operates most of the former Roca division of FA. Nuevo Central Argentino - (NCA)  Operates former Mitre division of FA. Ramal Ferro Industrial Rio Turbio - (RFIRT) Operates the Rio Turbio-Rio
Gallegos narrow gauge coal line. 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) Standard gauge Buenos Aires suburban operators
Ferrovías -  operates services over Linea Belgrano Norte. Metrovias -  operates services over Linea Urquiza and also operates Tren de la Costa -  operates a light rail line between Maipu station Trenes de Buenos Aires (TBA)  operates services over Linea Unidad de Gestión Operativa Ferroviaria de
the Buenos Aires Metro.
Sarmiento and Linea Mitre.
Emergencia (UGOFE)  operates services over Linea San Martín, Linea Roca and Linea Belgrano Sur previously run by Metropolitano.
Long distance and regional passenger operators
América Latina Logística (ALL)  operates passenger services between Ferrobaires (FB)  operates passenger services in Buenos Aires Province. Ferrocentral operates passenger services Buenos Aires-Rosario-Cordoba, Servicios Ferroviarios del Chaco (SEFECHA) operates Resistencia suburban Trenes de Buenos Aires (TBA)  operates passenger services between Trenes Especiales Argentinos (TEA)  operates passenger services Buenos Servicios Ferroviarios Patagónico  operates passenger services in Rio
Basavilbaso and Concordia in Entre Rios Province.
Buenos Aires-Rosario-Tucumán and Cordoba-Villa Maria.
services and regional trains in Chaco Province.
Buenos Aires, Rosario and Santa Fé.
Negro Province. Belize
(There are no longer any railways in Belize) Stann Creek Railway (closed in 1937 - see Rail transport in Belize)
Empresa Nacional de Ferrocarriles (ENFER) (Bolivia National Railways, 1996 Empresa Ferroviaria Andina (FCA) (Western railway network) Ferroviaria Oriental S.A. (FO) (Eastern railway network, 50% owned
split and partly privatized)
by Genesee & Wyoming)  Brazil
Rede Ferroviária Federal SA (RFFSA) (Brazilian Federal Railways, (Privatized in América Latina Logística SA (ALL) MRS Logística (MRS) Ferrovia Centro Atlântica (FCA) (Controlled by Vale do Rio Doce)
1998 and broken up in several enterprises):
Companhia Ferroviária do Nordeste (CFN) (Controlled by Companhia Companhia Paulista de Trens Metropolitanos (CPTM) (the state owned Supervia(It is the privately owned company responsible for the commuter Companhia Brasileira de Trens Urbanos (CBTU) (the state owned company Ferronorte (controlled by Brasil Ferrovias holding, from 2006 to holdding was Novoeste (controlled by Brasil Ferrovias holding, from 2006 to holdding was Ferroban (controlled by Brasil Ferrovias holding, from 2006 to holdding was
company responsible for the commuter trains in the state of São Paulo)
trains in the state of Rio de Janeiro)
responsible for the commuter trains in several states)
bought by the company América Latina Logística SA (ALL))
bought by the company América Latina Logística SA (ALL)))
bought by the company América Latina Logística SA (ALL))) Those lines were ever privately owned:
Estrada de Ferro Vitória a Minas (EFVM) (Controlled by Vale do Rio Doce) Estrada de Ferro Carajás (EFC) (Controlled by Vale do Rio Doce)
Locomotive Ferronor 320. Locomotive General Electric U9C
Empresa de los Ferrocarriles del Estado (EFE) Chilean State Railways FEPASA, Chilean Freight Operation Concession on the broad gauge lines in TRANSAP, Chilean Freight Operation Concession on the broad gauge lines in
FERRONOR, Chilean Freight Operation Concession on the meter gauge lines FCALP, Chilean Freight Operation Concession on the meter gauge lines in the FCAB, Chilean Freight Operation Private company on the meter gauge lines in
in the north
the north Colombia
Ferrocarriles Nacionales de Colombia (National Railways of Colombia)
Instituto Costarricense del Ferrocarril (INCOFER) National Atlantic Railroad Pacific Electric Railroad
Ferrocarriles Nacionales de Cuba (Cuban National Railways)
Empresa de Ferrocarriles Ecuatorianos (Ecuador State Railways)
Ferrocarriles de Guatemala (FEGUA) (Guatemala Railway) - see Rail transport
in Guatemala Guyana Haiti (see main article: Rail transport in Haiti)
Compagnie des Chemins de Fer de Port-au-Prince, January 17, 1878 - April Société des Tramways de Port-au-Prince, April 18, 1897 - 1901 Chemin de Fer Central (owned by Haitian American Sugar Company/Hasco) Compagnie des Chemins de Fer de la Plaine du Cul-de-Sac 1896 - 1950's(?) Compagnie Nationale (Compagnie de Fer Nationale?/Haitian National
(purchased by Compagnie des Chemins de Fer de la Plaine du Cul-de-Sac)
1915 - 1932(?)
Railroad?) 1905 - 1940's(?) (probably purchased by Societe Haitiano-Americaine de Developpement Agricole/SHADA in 1940's) Honduras
Ferrocarril Nacional de Honduras Vaccaro Railway Tela Railroad
Here are some pictures and information on Ferrocarril Nacional de Honduras http://www.fahrplancenter.com/FCNacionalHondurasEntry.html Jamaica
Jamaica Railway Corporation (See Transport in Jamaica)
(There are no longer any railways in Nicaragua) Ferrocarril del Pacifico de Nicaragua (Pacific Railway of Nicaragua)
see some pictures on http://www.fahrplancenter.com/NicaraguaTitel.html Panama
Panama Canal Railway Chiriqui National Railroad
Ferrocarril Presidente Carlos Antonio Lopez (President Carlos Antonio Lopez
Empresa Nacional de Ferrocarriles del Peru (ENAFER) (Peruvian National
Railways) El Salvador
Ferrocarriles Nacionales del Salvador (FENADESAL) (National Railways of El
Suriname Government Railway
Administación de Ferrocarriles del Estado (AFE)  (State Railways
Instituto Autónomo de Ferrocarriles del Estado (IAFE)  (Venezuela
List of rail transport topics
Rail transport High-speed rail Rapid transit
Technology and Theory Locomotives (Steam) Locomotives (Diesel) Locomotives (Electric) Rolling Stock
Track and Infrastructure Signalling
Integrated Electronic Control Centre railway signal
Types of railway/railroad
Fell mountain railway system Heritage railway Monorail Mountain railway Plateway Rack railway Tourist railroad Wagonway
List of rail accidents:
Rail accidents pre-1950 Rail accidents 1950–1999 Rail accidents 2000–present List of railway acts (United Kingdom railway legislation) List of heritage railways List of named passenger trains List of railroad-related periodicals List of railway companies List of railway companies in Switzerland List of railway roundhouses List of suburban and commuter rail systems
Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 (United States) Rail Passenger Service Act (United States) rail transport by country rail transport modelling (see under methods of power) rail transport operations rail usage statistics by country rail vehicles rail yard (rail way: see) rail transport (rail yard) classification yard (marshalling yard) (Rail, Maritime and Transport workers union) National Union of Rail, (rail-bus) railcar
Maritime and Transport Workers
(rail-road) rail transport (rail-way) rail transport (railbanking: see) rail trail (railbuff) railfan (railbus) railcar railcar (railcar mover) rail car mover railfan railgrinder (rail grinder) railhead (railroad: see) rail transport (railroad-related periodicals: see) List of railroad-related periodicals Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania Railroad Revitalization and Regulatory Reform Act (United States) (Railroad Transportation Act) Esch-Cummins Act (United States) (Railroad and Railway: see) usage of the terms railroad and railway (railroad buff) railfan railroad car (railroad car float) car float railroad chronometers (railroad crossing) level crossing (grade crossing) railroad directions (railroad station) train station railroad switch (railroad terminal) terminal station (railroad terminology) rail terminology railroad tie (sleeper) (railroad track: see) rail tracks (railroad tracks) rail tracks (railyard) classification yard (marshalling yard) Railways Act 1993 (Britain) Railway Construction Act (in Japan) Railway Express Agency
Railway Labor Act (United States) Railway Mail Service Railway Nationalization Act (Japan) railway post office Railway Procurement Agency (in Ireland) railway signal Railway Systems engineering Railway Technical Centre (in Britain) (railway car) railroad car (railway companies: see) list of railway companies railway electrification system (railway ferry) train ferry (railway gauge) rail gauge (railway junction) junction (rail) (railway line) rail tracks (railway line of Dakar-Niger) Dakar-Niger Railway (railway locomotive) locomotive Railway Mania railway nationalization railway platform railway post office (RPO) railway signal railway signalling (railway sleeper) railroad tie (railway station) train station railway station layouts railway stations in Leeds railway stations in Newport railway stations in the Netherlands railway stations of Hong Kong (railway switch) railroad switch (railway terminology) rail terminology (railway terminus) terminal station
(railway transport in Belgium) rail transport in Belgium (railways: see) rail transport Railways Act 1921 (in Britain) Railways Act 1993 (in Britain) Railways Act 2005 (in the United Kingdom) (railways disasters) list of rail accidents: pre-1950; 1950–1999; 2000– railways in Adelaide (in Australia) (railways in Australia: see) rail transport in Australia (railways in China: see) rail transport in the People's Republic of China (railways in Hong Kong: see) rail transport in Hong Kong railways in Melbourne (railways in Mexico: see) rail transport in Mexico railways in Namibia (railways in New Zealand: see) rail transport in New Zealand (railways in Taiwan: see) rail transport in Taiwan (railways in Victoria: see) rail transport in Victoria (in Australia) railways of Shropshire (in Britain) (railways of Taiwan: see) rail transport in Taiwan (railways of the People Republic of China: see) rail transport in the (railyard) classification yard (marshalling yard)
People's Republic of China
Rail transport .
BNSF Railway freight service in the United States
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Terminology By country Accidents Modelling This box: view • talk • edit Rail transport is the means of conveyance of passengers and goods by way of wheeled vehicles running on rail tracks. In contrast to road transport, where vehicles merely run on a prepared surface, rail vehicles are also directionally guided by the tracks they run on. Track usually consists of steel rails installed on sleepers/ties and ballast, on which the rolling stock, usually fitted with metal wheels, moves. However, other variations are also possible, such as slab track where the rails are fastened to a concrete foundation resting on a prepared subsurface. Rolling stock in railway transportation systems generally has lower frictional resistance when compared with highway vehicles, and the carriages and wagons can be coupled into longer trains. The operation is carried out by a railway company, providing transport between train stations or freight customer facilities. Power is provided by locomotives which either draw electrical powerfrom a railway electrification system or produce their own power, usually by diesel engines. Most tracks are accompanied by asignalling system. Railways are a safe land transportation system when compared to other forms of transportation. Railway transportation is capable of high levels of passenger and cargo utilization and energy efficiency, but is often less flexible and more capital-intensive than highway transportation is, when lower traffic levels are considered. The oldest, man-hauled railways date to the 6th century B.C, with Periander, one of the Seven Sages of Greece, credited with its invention. With the British development of the steam engine, it was possible to construct mainline railways, which were a key component of the industrial revolution. Also, railways reduced the costs of shipping, and allowed for fewer lost goods. The change from canals to railways allowed for "national markets" in which prices varied very little from city to city. Studies have shown that the invention and development of the railway in Europe was one of the most important technological inventions of the late 19th
century for the United States, without which, GDP would have been lower by 7.0% in 1890. In the 1880s, electrified trains were introduced, and also the first tramways and rapid transit systems came into being. Starting during the 1940s, the nonelectrified railways in most countries had their steam locomotives replaced by diesel-electric locomotives, with the process being almost complete by 2000. During the 1960s, electrified high-speed railway systems were introduced in Japan and a few other countries. Other forms of guided ground transportation outside the traditional railway definitions, such as monorail or maglev, have been tried but have seen limited use.
Horsecar in Brno, Czech Republic Pre-steam The earliest evidence of a railway was a 6-kilometre (3.7 mi) Diolkos wagonway, which transported boats across theCorinth isthmus in Greece during the 9th century BC. Trucks pushed by slaves ran in grooves in limestone, which provided the track element. The Diolkos ran for over 600 years. Railways began reappearing in Europe after the Dark Ages. The earliest known record of a railway in Europe from this period is a stained-glass window in the Minster of Freiburg im Breisgau in Germany, dating from around 1350. In 1515,Cardinal Matthäus Lang wrote a description of the Reisszug, a funicular railway at the Hohensalzburg Castle in Austria. The line originally used wooden rails and a hemp haulage rope, and was operated by human or animal power. The line
still exists, albeit in updated form, and is probably the oldest railway still to operate.
By 1550, narrow gauge railways with wooden rails were common in mines in Europe. By the 17th century, wooden wagonways were common in the United Kingdom for transporting coal from mines to canal wharfs for transshipment to boats. The world's oldest continually working railway, built in 1758, is the Middleton Railway in Leeds. In 1764, the first gravity railroad in the United States was built in Lewiston, New York. The first permanent was the 1810 Leiper Railroad. The first iron plate rail way made with cast iron plats on top of wooden rails, was taken into use in 1768. This allowed a variation of gauge to be used. At first only balloon loops could be used for turning, but later, movable points were taken into use that allowed for switching. From the 1790s, iron edge rails began to appear in the United Kingdom. In 1803, William Jessop opened the Surrey Iron Railway in south London, arguably the world's first horse-drawn public railway.
Hot rolling iron allowed the brittle, and often uneven, cast iron rails to be
replaced by wrought iron in 1805. These were succeeded by steel in 1857.
Age of steam
A British steam locomotive-hauled train The development of the steam engine spurred ideas for mobile steam locomotives that could haul trains on tracks. The first was patented byJames Watt in 1794. In 1804, Richard Trevithick demonstrated the first locomotive-hauled train in Merthyr Tydfil, United Kingdom.Accompanied with Andrew Vivian, it ran with mixed success, breaking some of the brittle cast-iron plates. Two years later, the first passenger horse-drawn railway was opened nearby between Swansea and Mumbles. In 1811, John Blenkinsop designed the first successful and practical railway locomotive—a rack railway worked by a steam
locomotive between Middleton Colliery and Leeds on theMiddleton Railway. The locomotive, The Salamanca, was built the following year.:20 In 1825, George Stephenson built the Locomotion for the Stockton and Darlington Railway, north east England, which was the first public steam railway in the world. In 1829, he built The Rocketwhich was entered in and won the Rainhill Trials. This success led to Stephenson establishing his company as the pre-eminent builder of steam locomotives used on railways in the United Kingdom, the United States and much of Europe.:24–30 In 1830, the first intercity railway, the Liverpool and Manchester Railway, opened. The gauge was that used for the early wagonways and had been adopted for the Stockton and Darlington Railway. The 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) width became known as the international standard gauge, used by about 60% of the world's railways. This spurred the spread of rail transport outside the UK. The Baltimore and Ohio that opened in 1830 was the first to evolve from a single line to a network in the United States. By 1831, a steam railway connected Albany and Schenectady, New York, a distance of 16 miles, which was covered in 40 minutes. In 1867, the first elevated railway was built in New York. The symbolically important first transcontinental railway was completed in 1869.
Elevated section of the Chicago L Electrification and dieselisation Experiments with electrical railways were started by Robert Davidson in 1838. He completed a battery-powered carriage capable of 6.4 km/h (4 mph). The Giant's Causeway Tramway was the first to use electricity fed to the trains en-route, using a third rail, when it opened in 1883.Overhead wires were taken into use in 1888. At first, this was taken into use on tramways that, until then, had been horsedrawn tramcars. The first conventional electrified railway was the Roslag Line in Sweden. During the 1890s, many large cities, such as London, Paris and New Yorkused the new technology to build rapid transit for urban commuting. In smaller
cities, tramways became common and were often the only mode of public transport until the introduction of buses in the 1920s. In North America, interurbans became a common mode to reach suburban areas. At first, all electric railways used direct current but, in 1904, the Spubeital Line in Austria opened with alternating current. Steam locomotives require large pools of labour to clean, load, maintain and run. After World War II, dramatically increased labour costs in developed countries made steam an increasingly costly form of motive power. At the same time, the war had forced improvements in internal combustion engine technology that made diesel locomotives cheaper and more powerful. This caused many railway companies to initiate programmes to convert all unelectrified sections from steam to diesel locomotion.
Luas in Dublin, Ireland Following the large-scale construction of motorways after the war, rail transport became less popular for commuting and air transport started taking large market shares from long-haul passenger trains. Most tramways were either replaced by rapid transits or buses, while high transshipment costs caused short-haul freight trains to become uncompetitive. The 1973 oil crisis led to a change of mind set and most tram systems that had survived into the 1970s remain today. At the same time, containerization allowed freight trains to become more competitive and participate in intermodal freight transport. With the 1962 introduction of the Shinkansen high-speed rail in Japan, trains could again have a dominant position on intercity travel. During the 1970s, the introduction of automated rapid transit systems allowed cheaper operation. The 1990s saw an increased focus on accessibility and low-floor trains. Many tramways have been upgraded to light rail and many cities that closed their old tramways have reopened new light railway systems.
Main article: Train A train is a connected series of rail vehicles that move along the track. Propulsion for the train is provided by a separate locomotive or from individual motors in selfpropelled multiple units. Most trains carry a revenue load, although non-revenue cars exist for the railway's own use, such as for maintenance-of-way purposes. The engine driver controls the locomotive or other power cars, although people movers and some rapid transits are driverless.
Russian 2TE10U diesel locomotive Haulage Main articles: Locomotive and Multiple unit Traditionally, trains are pulled using a locomotive. This involved a single or multiple powered vehicles being located at the front of the train and providing sufficient adhesion to haul the weight of the full train. This remains dominant for freight trains and is often used for passenger trains. Apush-pull train has the end passenger car equipped with a driver's cab so the engine driver can remotely control the locomotive. This allows one of the locomotive-hauled trains drawbacks to be removed, since the locomotive need not be moved to the end of the train each time the train changes direction. A railroad car is a vehicle used for the haulage of either passengers or freight. A multiple unit has powered wheels throughout the whole train. These are used for rapid transit and tram systems, as well as many both short- and long-haul passenger trains. A railcar is a single, self-powered car. Multiple units have a driver's cab at each end of the unit and were developed following the ability to build electric motors and engines small enough to build under the coach. There are only a few freight multiple units, most of which are high-speed post trains.
A RegioSwinger multiple unit of theCroatian Railways Steam locomotives are locomotives with a steam engine that provides adhesion. Coal, petroleum, or wood is burned in a firebox. The heat boils water in the fire-tube boiler to create pressurized steam. The steam travels through the smokebox before leaving via the chimney. In the process, it powers a piston that transmits power directly through a connecting rod (US: main rod) and a crankpin (US: wristpin) on the driving wheel (US main driver) or to a crank on a driving axle. Steam locomotives have been phased out in most parts of the world for economical and safety reasons although many are preserved in working order by heritage railways. Electric locomotives draw power from a stationary source via an overhead wire or third rail. Some also or instead use a battery. A transformer in the locomotive converts the high voltage, low current power to low voltage, high current used in the electric motors that power the wheels. Modern locomotives use three-phase AC induction motors. Electric locomotives are the most powerful traction. They are also the cheapest to run and provide less noise and no local air pollution. However, they require high capital investments both for the overhead line and the supporting infrastructure. Accordingly, electric traction is used on urban systems, lines with high traffic and for high-speed rail. Diesel locomotives use a diesel engine as the prime mover. The energy transmission may be either diesel-electric, diesel-mechanical or diesel-hydraulic but diesel-electric is dominant. Electro-diesel locomotives are built to run as dieselelectric on unelectrified sections and as electric locomotives on electrified sections. Alternative methods of motive power include magnetic levitation, horsedrawn, cable, gravity, pneumatics and gas turbine.
Passenger trains Main article: Passenger train A passenger train travels between stations where passengers may embark and disembark. The oversight of the train is the duty of a guard/train manager. Passenger trains are part ofpublic transport and often make up the stem of the service, with buses feeding to stations.
Interior view of the top deck of a VRInterCity2 double-deck carriage Intercity trains are long-haul trains that operate with few stops between cities. Trains typically have amenities such as a dining car. Some lines also provide overnight services with sleeping cars. Some long-haul trains been given a specific name. Regional trains are medium distance trains that connect cities with outlying, surrounding areas, or provide a regional service, making more stops and having lower speeds.Commuter trains serve suburbs of urban areas, providing a daily commuting service. Airport rail links provide quick access from city centres toairports. Rapid transit is built in large cities and has the highest capacity of any passenger transport system. It is grade separated and commonly built underground or elevated. At street level, smaller trams can be used. Light rails are upgraded trams that have step-free access, their own right-of-way and sometimes sections underground. Monorail systems operate as elevated, medium capacity systems. A people mover is a driverless, grade-separated train that serves only a few stations, as a shuttle. High-speed rail operates at much higher speeds than conventional railways, the limit being regarded at 200 to 320 km/h. High-speed trains are used mostly for longhaul service and most systems are in Western Europe and East Asia. The speed record is 574.8 km/h (357.2 mph), set by a modified French TGV. Magnetic levitation trains such as the Shanghai airport train use under-riding magnets which
attract themselves upward towards the underside of a guideway and this line has achieved somewhat higher peak speeds in day-to-day operation than conventional high-speed railways, although only over short distances. Freight train Main article: Freight train
Bulk cargo of minerals A freight train hauls cargo using freight cars specialized for the type of goods. Freight trains can be very efficient, with economy of scale and high energy efficiency. However, their use is reduced by lack of flexibility, often by the need of transshipment at both ends of the trip due to lack of tracks to the points of pick-up and delivery. Authorities often encourage the use of cargo rail transport due to its environmental profile. Container trains have become the dominant type in the US for non-bulk haulage. Containers can easily be transshipped to other modes, such as ships and trucks, using cranes. This has succeeded the boxcar (wagon-load), where the cargo had to be loaded and unloaded into the train manually. In Europe, the sliding wall wagon has largely superseded the ordinary covered wagons. Other types of cars include refrigerator cars,stock cars for livestock and autoracks for road vehicles. When rail is combined with road transport, a roadrailer will allow trailers to be driven onto the train, allowing for easy transition between road and rail. Bulk handling represents a key advantage for rail transport. Low or even zero transshipment costs combined with energy efficiency and low inventory costs allow trains to handle bulk much cheaper than by road. Typical bulk cargo includes coal, ore, grains and liquids. Bulk is transported in open-topped cars and tank cars. Infrastructure
Main article: Permanent way
Left: Railway turnouts; Right: Chicago Transit Authority control tower 18 guides elevated Chicago 'L' north and southbound Purple and Brown lines intersecting with east and westbound Pink and Green lines and the looping Orange line above theWells and Lake street intersection in the loop at an elevated right of way. Right of way Main article: Right-of-way Railway tracks are laid upon land owned or leased by the railway company. Owing to the desirability of maintaining modest grades, rails will often be laid in circuitous routes in hilly or mountainous terrain. Route length and grade requirements can be reduced by the use of alternating cuttings, bridges and tunnels—all of which can greatly increase the capital expenditures required to develop a right of way, while significantly reducing operating costs and allowing higher speeds on longer radius curves. In densely urbanized areas, railways are sometimes laid in tunnels to minimize the effects on existing properties.
Main article: Rail tracks
Long freight train crossing the Stoney Creek viaduct on theCanadian Pacific Railway in southern British Columbia Track consists of two parallel steel rails, anchored perpendicular to members called ties (sleepers) of timber, concrete, steel, or plastic to maintain a consistent distance apart, or gauge. The track guides the conical, flanged wheels, keeping the cars on the track without active steering and therefore allowing trains to be much longer than road vehicles. The rails and ties are usually placed on a foundation made of compressed earth on top of which is placed a bed of ballast to distribute the load from the ties and to prevent the track from buckling as the ground settles over time under the weight of the vehicles passing above. The ballast also serves as a means of drainage. Some more modern track in special areas is attached by direct fixation without ballast. Track may be prefabricated or assembled in place. By welding rails together to form lengths of continuous welded rail, additional wear and tear on rolling stock caused by the small surface gap at the joints between rails can be counteracted; this also makes for a quieter ride (passenger trains). On curves the outer rail may be at a higher level than the inner rail. This is called superelevation or cant. This reduces the forces tending to displace the track and makes for a more comfortable ride for standing livestock and standing or seated passengers. A given amount of superelevation will be the most effective over a limited range of speeds. Turnouts, also known as points and switches, are the means of directing a train onto a diverging section of track. Laid similar to normal track, a point typically consists of
a frog (common crossing), check rails and two switch rails. The switch rails may be moved left or right, under the control of the signalling system, to determine which path the train will follow. Spikes in wooden ties can loosen over time, but split and rotten ties may be individually replaced with new wooden ties or concrete substitutes. Concrete ties can also develop cracks or splits, and can also be replaced individually. Should the rails settle due to soil subsidence, they can be lifted by specialized machinery and additional ballast tamped under the ties to level the rails. Periodically, ballast must be removed and replaced with clean ballast to ensure adequate drainage. Culverts and other passages for water must be kept clear lest water is impounded by the trackbed, causing landslips. Where trackbeds are placed along rivers, additional protection is usually placed to prevent streambank erosion during times of high water. Bridges require inspection and maintenance, since they are subject to large surges of stress in a short period of time when a heavy train crosses.
Great Western Railwaysemaphore-type signal Signalling Main article: Railway signalling Railway signalling is a system used to control railway traffic safely to prevent trains from colliding. Being guided by fixed rails with low friction, trains are uniquely susceptible to collision since they frequently operate at speeds that do not enable them to stop quickly or within the driver's sighting distance. Most forms of train control involve movement authority being passed from those responsible for each
section of a rail network to the train crew. Not all methods require the use of signals, and some systems are specific to single track railways. The signalling process is traditionally carried out in a signal box, a small building that houses the lever frame required for the signalman to operate switches and signal equipment. These are placed at various intervals along the route of a railway, controlling specified sections of track. More recent technological developments have made such operational doctrine superfluous, with the centralization of signalling operations to regional control rooms. This has been facilitated by the increased use of computers, allowing vast sections of track to be monitored from a single location. The common method of block signalling divides the track into zones guarded by combinations of block signals, operating rules, and automatic-control devices so that only one train may be in a block at any time. Electrification Main article: Railway electrification system The electrification system provides electrical energy to the trains, so they can operate without a prime mover onboard. This allows lower operating costs, but requires large capital investments along the lines. Mainline and tram systems normally have overhead wires, which hang from poles along the line. Gradeseparated rapid transit sometimes use a ground third rail. Power may be fed as direct or alternating current. The most common currencies are 600 and 750 V for tram and rapid transit systems, and 1,500 and 3,000 V for mainlines. The two dominant AC systems are 15 kV AC and 25 kV AC. Stations Main article: Train station
Secunderabad Railway Station inHyderabad, India
A railway station serves as an area where passengers can board and alight from trains. A goods station is a yard which is exclusively used for loading and unloading cargo. Large passenger stations have at least one building providing conveniences for passengers, such as purchasing tickets and food. Smaller stations typically only consist of a platform. Early stations were sometimes built with both passenger and goods facilities. Platforms are used to allow easy access to the trains, and are connected to each other via underpasses, footbridge and level crossings. Some large stations are built as cul-de-sac, with trains only operating out from one direction. Smaller stations normally serve local residential areas, and may have connection to feeder bus services. Large stations, in particular central stations, serve as the main public transport hub for the city, and have transfer available between rail services, and to rapid transit, tram or bus services. Operations Main article: Rail transport operations
In the United States, railways, such asUnion Pacific, are privately owned Ownership Main article: Railway company Traditionally, the infrastructure and rolling stock are owned and operated by the same company. This has often been by a national railway, while other companies have had private railways. Since the 1980s, there has been an increasing tendency to split up railway companies, with separate companies owning the stock from those owning the infrastructure, particularly in Europe, where this is required by the European Union. This has allowed open access by any train operator to any portion of the European railway network. Financing
The main source of income for railway companies is from ticket revenue (for passenger transport) and shipment fees for cargo. Discounts and monthly passes are sometimes available for frequent travellers. Freight revenue may be sold per container slot or for a whole train. Sometimes, the shipper owns the cars and only rents the haulage. For passenger transport, advertisement income can be significant. Government may choose to give subsidies to rail operation, since rail transport has fewer externalities than other dominant modes of transport. If the railway company is state-owned, the state may simply provide direct subsidies in exchange for an increased production. If operations have been privatized, several options are available. Some countries have a system where the infrastructure is owned by a government agency or company—with open access to the tracks for any company that meets safety requirements. In such cases, the state may choose to provide the tracks free of charge, or for a fee that does not cover all costs. This is seen as analogous to the government providing free access to roads. For passenger operations, a direct subsidy may be paid to a public-owned operator, or public service obligation tender may be helt, and a time-limited contract awarded to the lowest bidder. Safety Main article: list of rail accidents pre-1950; 1950–1999; 2000–present.
Train crash at Montparnasse Station, Paris, France, in 1895. Rail transport is one of the safest forms of land travel. Trains can travel at very high speed, but they are heavy, are unable to deviate from the track and require a great distance to stop. Possible accidents include derailment (jumping the track), a collision with another train or collision with an automobile or other
vehicle at level crossings. The latter accounts for the majority of rail accidents and casualties. The most important safety measures to prevent accidents are strict operating rules, e.g. railway signalling and gates or grade separation at crossings. Train whistles, bells or horns warn of the presence of a train, while trackside signals maintain the distances between trains. An important element in the safety of many high-speed inter-city networks such as Japan's Shinkansen is the fact that trains only run on dedicated railway lines, without level crossings. This effectively eliminates the potential for collision with automobiles, other vehicles and pedestrians, vastly reduces the likelihood of collision with other trains and helps ensure services remain timely.
Impact Energy Rail transport is an energy-efficient
but capital-intensive, means of
mechanized land transport. The tracks provide smooth and hard surfaces on which the wheels of the train can roll with a minimum of friction. As an example, a typical modern wagon can hold up to 113 tonnes of freight on two four-wheel bogies. The contact area between each wheel and the rail is a strip no more than a few millimetres wide, which minimizes friction. The track distributes the weight of the train evenly, allowing significantly greater loads per axle and wheel than in road transport, leading to less wear and tear on the permanent way. This can save energy compared with other forms of transportation, such as road transport, which depends on the friction between rubber tires and the road. Trains have a small frontal area in relation to the load they are carrying, which reduces air resistance and thus energy usage. In addition, the presence of track guiding the wheels allows for very long trains to be pulled by one or a few engines, even around curves, which allows for economies of scale in energy use; by contrast, in road transport, more than two articulations causes fishtailing and makes the vehicle unsafe.
Railway tracks running throughStanhope, United Kingdom Usage Due to these benefits, rail transport is a major form of passenger and freight transport in many countries. In India, China, South Korea and Japan, many millions use trains as regular transport. It is widespread in European countries. Freight rail transport is widespread and heavily used in North America, but intercity passenger rail transport on that continent is relatively scarce outside the Northeast Corridor. Africa and South America have some extensive networks such as in South Africa, Northern Africa and Argentina; but some railway on these continents are isolated lines connecting two places. Australia has a generally sparse network befitting its population density, but has some areas with significant networks, especially in the southeast. In addition to the previously existing east-west transcontinental line in Australia, a line from north to south has been constructed. The highest railway in the world is the line to Lhasa, in Tibet, partly running over permafrost territory. The western Europe region has the highest railway density in the world, and has many individual trains which operate through several countries despite technical and organizational differences in each national network. Of 236 countries and dependencies globally, 143 have rail transport (including several with very little), of which about 90 have passenger
"High speed train" redirects here. For an article about the High Speed Train, a diesel-powered train in the UK, see InterCity 125.
"Fast train" redirects here. For other uses, see Fast Train (disambiguation).
Automotrice à grande vitesse (AGV) being tested in Velim, Czech Republic
E5 Series Shinkansen in Japan
German designed third generation ICE onCologne-Frankfurt high-speed rail line High-speed rail (HSR) is a type of passenger rail transport that operates significantly faster than the normal speed of rail traffic. Specific definitions by the European Union include 200 km/h (120 mph) for upgraded track and 250 km/h (160 mph) or faster for new track. In Japan,Shinkansen lines run at speeds in excess of 260 km/h (160 mph) and are built using standard gauge track with no atgrade crossings. InChina, high-speed conventional rail lines operate at top speeds of 350 km/h (220 mph), and one Maglev Line in Shanghai reaches speeds of 431 km/h (268 mph). The world record for conventional high-speed rail is held by the V150, a specially configured version of Alstom's TGVwhich clocked 574.8 km/h
(357.2 mph) on a test run. The world speed record for Maglev is held by the Japanese experimental MLX01: 581 km/h (361 mph). While high-speed rail is usually designed for passenger travel, some high-speed systems also carry some kind of freight service. For instance, the French mail service La Poste owns a few special TGV trains for carrying postal freight. History
The Italian ETR 200 in 1938 was the first high speed service train. It achieved theworld mean speed record in 1938, reaching 203 km/h (126 mph) near Milan
Shinkansen First High speed train design in 1964, the 0 Series at Fukuyama Station, April 2002 (retired). The first Shinkansen trains ran at speeds of up to 210 km/h (130 mph), soon after increased to 220 km/h (140 mph). Railways were the first form of mass transportation on land and until the development of the motorcar in the early 20th century had an effective monopoly on land transport. Both streamlined steam locomotives and high-speed EMUs were used for high speed services. The modern high-speed rail era started 6 October 1903. An electrical railcar from Siemens & Halske sped away at 203 km/h (126 mph) on the military railway track between Marienfeld and Zossen in Germany. It showed that high-speed rail
was possible, and that the future was electrical. For scheduled trains, however, such a speed still was more than 60 years away. For rail speed records, see Land speed record for rail vehicles. The high-speed interurbans The electrical streetcar (tram) was born as an urban transportation medium, but already before 1890 the first urban lines or networks were connected. The interurban, the remarkable hybrid between a streetcar and a conventional train, was created. Interurbans were built (and do still exist) both in Europe and Asia, but the high-speed interurban was a U.S. invention, and their constructors were the first to implement several HSR technologies. Interurbans were especially popular in the Midwest (Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin). Another stronghold was the Philadelphia area. Two essential HSR properties – streamlining to reduce air resistance, and tracks with no grade crossing – were introduced more than hundred years ago on the interuban scene. In 1903 the officials of the Louisiana Purchase Exposition organized the Electric Railway Test Commission to conduct a series of tests to develop a carbody design that would reduce wind resistance at high speeds. After a couple of years’ research with speeds up to 70 mph (above 110 km/h), several streamliners were built – but for the service speeds and heavy equipment of this era, no significant operating economies were realized, and streamlining was soon discarded for another quarter century. In 1907 Philadelphia & Western Railroad (P&W) opened their double-track Strafford–Upper Darby line without a single grade crossing, and the first absolute block signal system ever installed on an interurban. The interurban development culminated with high-speed railcars like the Red Devils (which were inaugurated in 1929), the Bullets from J. G. Brill Company (1931), and the Electroliners which in 1941-63 ran between Chicago and Milwaukee and in 1963–1976 in the Philadelphia area. These lightweight constructions weighed only about 500 kg per seat; today’s high-speed trains are heavier. Their commercial top speed was about 145 km/t (90 mph), but they able to about 160 km/t in test runs – the Electroliners even almost 180 km/h (110 mph), a respectable speed for a “tram”. Station-to-stations speeds at 70 mph (more than 110 km/h) were not infrequently attained on Samuel Insull’s interurbans in the Chicago area. The Bullets were the first rail equipment made after windtunnel research to reduce the air resistance; they are called ‘very first
high-speed “Super” trains; ancestors of the TGV, ICE, Shinkansen, and the Acela Express’. The diesel-electric hegemony In most of the U.S., the rail passenger transport deteriorated because of the fierce competition from cars and buses, which ran on subsidized streets and highways – at many places also because of infiltration from the automaker companies (Great American streetcar scandal). The electrical trams (streetcars) and interurbans were especially sensitive to the competition, partially because the were clogged in the streets’ car jams. Yet the P&W survived, and survived very well; their successor SEPTA serves the Philadelphia area very well even today. After the Electroliners’ introduction, however, the interurbans didn’t contribute to the highspeed development. In addition to their own Bullets, P&W bought the used Electroliners and made the Philadelphia area a refugium for old interurbans. They held a couple of Bullets almost 60 years in a commuter service; the last Bullets were phased out after surviving six generations of «modern» buses. Some few years, diesel-electrics dominated among the high-speed trains, or protohigh-speed trains if the HSR limit is set to 200 km/h (in 1931, Franz Kruckenberg’s gasoline-drivenSchienenzeppelin reached 230 km/h, but didn’t come into regular service). In 1933, Germany’s Fliegender Hamburger – a train with two wagons and 102 seats – sped at 160 km/h in commercial traffic on the route Hamburg–Berlin. The average speed, 124 km/h, was faster than the interurbans, mostly because the train ran non-stop and without running at snail’s pace through congested city streets – though not much faster. A few similar trains were inaugurated on other mainlines. However, the Nazi regime preferred motorways and planes to railways. The U.S. railways still have not given up the race. In 1934, a diesel-electric streamliner, the legendary Pioneer Zephyr from the Budd Company, was inaugurated on the Kansas City (Missouri)–Omaha–Lincoln (Nebraska) route. It had 72 seats (later expanded to 112). It was one of the first articulated trains with Jacobs bogies and was followed by several similar Zephyrs, which served U.S. railways till about 1960. In 1939, the Wisconsin people could say good morning to the first train reaching the 100 mph mark (161 km/h) in regular service. Its name was Morning Hiawatha – the last steam engine in the record books. This record
should survive a quarter of a century. Yet the Italian ETR 200 sped at up to 203 km/h between Florence and Milan, but only on a test run. The stagnation In the USA, the passenger traffic by rail became marginalized, at least outside the Northeast Corridor (Boston–Washington) and the Chicago area. Not so in Europe, even if the high-speed development stagnated here, too, and many rural branch lines were given up. Yet the sluggish steam locomotives were substituted by not-so-sluggish diesels; a few countries like Switzerland, Sweden and Norway also electrified their mainlines. This brought the journey times down. In 1957, some countries introduced the TEE (Trans-Europe Express) international service, but none of the trains on that network surpassed Fliegender Hamburger’s speed until much later. The turbotrain siding In the 1960s, several jet-powered and gas turbine trains appeared on the highspeed scene. These sorts of engines had a much higher power-to-weight ratio than diesels, and the fuel was cheap – which made them well fit to nonelectrified service. In 1966, the M-497 Black Beetle was born. Two second-hand General Electric J47-19 jet engines (designed as boosters for the Convair B-36 intercontinental bomber) were mounted atop an existing Budd Rail Diesel Car body which had received a streamlined front cowling. On an arrow-straight track in Indiana and Ohio this “Jet Zephyr” set a still valid North American speed record at 296 km/h (183 mph) – but with exception of the record books, both the train and the data were ignored. In 1970, a similar train was built in the USSR. The most innovative gas turbine train was the UAC TurboTrain made by the United Aircraft Corporation in Canada. It was a sleek, articulated train with Jacobs bogies like the Pioneer Zephyr and the Electroliners, with an alumium carbody, and with a tilting mechanism. The turbines were small and light compared to diesel engines, too. The turbines were downrated from 600 to 300 hp or 447 to 224 kW (probably because the noise from a turbine usually increases much more than the rotation speed) and weighed only 136 kg; each power car had up to six turbines for propulsion, and one which run a generator for lighting etc. On a high-speed stretch in the Northeast Corridor it sped away at 275 km/h, still U.S. record for any commercial train. More important, the train was able to run at high speed on mediocre tracks – in theory. Canadian and U.S. railroads bought five and two,
respectively, and they were inaugurated in 1968 though the Canadian ones paused till 1973 after problems during the cold winter 1969. In service, they were limited to 161 km/h (100 mph). They reduced the journey time from about five to about four hours on the Toronto–Montreal line; with an availability rate of over 97% they offered two departures each way a day in the years 1973-82. After that, the last UAC TurboTrain was parked. The more mundane French turbotrains and their derivatives (Turboliners etc.) were the most successful of all passenger turbotrains, both in North America and in France itself. The FrenchRTG Turbotrain ran till 2005 and survived all other turbotrains in regular service. Their commercial speed didn’t surpass 160 km/h, but their follow-up, the very first TGV, reached 318 km/h, which is still world record for turbotrains. SNCF got valuable experiences with this experimental train, and the commercial TGVs were very similar to the TGV-001 – but rising oil prices made SNCF switching to electricity. The turbotrains were noisy, too, especially when starting at the stations. In 2002, Bombardier tried to breathe new life into the turbotrain technology with its JetTrain. As of 2010, it has yet to amount to anything more than an experimental train. Shinkansen The true HSR breakthrough started in Japan. In this densely populated country, especially the 45-million-people area between Tokyo and Osaka, the traffic during the 1950s congested to reach maximum capacity. Both the roads and the narrow-gauge railways were jammed. In 1957, the Odakyu Electric Railway in Greater Tokyo area had launched its Romancecar 3000 SE. Again the train designers were inspired by the U.S. interurbans,[who?] in this case the last of them – the Electroliners. The Romancecars set a world record for narrow gauge trains at 145 km/h (90 mph), giving Japanese designers[who?] confidence they could safely and reliably build even faster trains at standard gauge.The idea of high speed rail was born. Yet a new, dedicated high-speed line was calculated to be very expensive. But it would be even more expensive not to build it. The construction started in April 1959, and test runs in 1963 hit top speeds at 256 km/h. And in October 1964, just in time for the Olympics, they opened the first Shinkansen, Tōkaidō Shinkansen, between the two cities.
The first Shinkansen trains, the 0 Series Shinkansen, built by Kawasaki Heavy Industries – in English often called ‘’Bullet’’ Trains – outclassed the earlier fast trains in commercial service. They ran the 515 km distance with a top speed at 210 km/h and an average speed at 162.8 km/h with stops at Nagoya and Kyoto; the records before Shinkansen were 161 and 132.8 km/h, respectively. But the speed was only a part of the Shinkansen revolution. The earlier high-speed or proto-high-speed trains and railcars were few and far between (ten Red Devils, 15 Brill Bullets, a few Zephyrs with different forenames, two Elelectroliners, one Morning Hiawatha, one Fliegender Hamburger, etc., each with 150 seats at best). While these services were initially limited, Shinkansen offered HSR for the masses. The first Bullet trains had 12 cars; later versions have up to 16, and there are double-deck trains too, to increase the capacity. After three years, more than 100 million passengers had used the trains, and the first billion was passed in 1976. Later, the Shinkansen system has grown to a 2459 km network, and the Tōkaidō Shinkansen still is the world's busiest highspeed rail line. Up to ten trains per hour with 16 cars each (1,300 seats capacity) run in each direction with a minimum of 3 minutes between trains.[citation
Though largely a long-distance transport system, the Shinkansen also serves But it doesn’t only replace car travel; it also substitutes much of the air traffic.
commuters who travel to work in metropolitan areas from outlying cities.[citation
needed] 
Introduction in Europe Japan’s Shinkansen success contributed to a revival for the HSR idea in Europe – together with rising oil prices, a growing environmental interest, and rising traffic congestions on the roads. In Europe, high-speed rail started during the International Transport Fair in Munich in June 1965, when DB Class 103 hauled a total of 347 demonstration trains at 200 km/h between Munich and Augsburg. The first regular service at this speed was the TEE "Le Capitole" between Paris and Toulouse with specially adapted SNCF Class BB 9200 locomotives. Great Britain introduced Europe’s first regular above-200 km/h-service, albeit with a small margin, and without building new lines. In the years 1976-82 they made 95 dieselecetric train sets of the type InterCity 125 – called so because of their maximum speed at 125 mph (201 km/h), compared to 100 mph (161 km/h) for their
forerunners. Their acceleration was better, too. Thus journey times were reduced, e.g. by an hour on the East Coast Main Line, and the passenger numbers soared. The IC 125 was planned to be followed by a tilting train, APT, to maximize the speed on twisted lines from the Victorian times – but the tilting mechanism brought on nausea in some of the passengers, and the APT project was shelved. This prolonged the IC 125’s lifetime, and even today they serve the nonelectrified mainlines. In the Continental Europe, several countries started to build new high-speed lines during the 1970s – Italy’s ‘’Direttissima’’ between Rome and Florence, Western Germany’s Hannover–Würzburg and Stuttgart–Mannheim lines, and France’s Paris– Lyon TGV line (LGV Sud-Est). The latter was the world’s fastest when it was fulfilled in 1983 (the Paris–Dijon partition was opened in 1981), with a maximum speed at 260 km/h and average at 214 km/h. Fares were affordable and the line became very popular; the air route between these cities was practically de-invented when the trains’ journey times shrunk from about 3½ to two hours. France went on building an extensive high-speed network. In combination with the Belgian and British lines, the Paris-Lille-Calais line allowed to open the fist HSR international services: ParisLondon (1994), London-Brussels (1994), both via the Channel Tunnel, and Brussels-Paris (1995). Germany followed up with its own high-speed network, and after Germany was re-united in 1990, the Hamburg–Berlin line again became a mainline. Spain’s first high speed line opened in 1992 between Madrid and Seville. In 2005 the Spanish Government elaborated an ambitious plan of infrastructures (PEIT 2005-2020) - it is envisioned that by 2020, 90 percent of the population will live within 50 km of a station served by AVE-. Spain is thenceforth building the largest HSR network in Europe: four new lines have been opened (Madrid-Zaragoza-LleidaTarragona-Barcelona, Córdoba- Malaga, Madrid-Toledo, Madrid-Segovia-Valladolid) and another 2219 km are currently under construction. High speed rail in China
Chinese designed CRH380A train leaving Shanghai's Hongqiao Station. In the middle of the 1990s, China's trains used to travel at a top speed of around 60 km/h. To increase railway transportation speed and capacity, The Ministry of Railways (MOR) has continuously increased the speed of its commercial train service on existing lines. From 1997 to 2007, the speed of China's railways increased six times, boosting passenger train speed on 22,000 km of tracks to 120 km/h, on 14,000 km of tracks to 160 km/hr, on 2,876 km of tracks to 200 km/h and on 846 km of tracks to 250 km/h. The state plan to develop high speed railways in China first began in the early 1990s. The Ministry of Railways submitted a proposal to build the Beijing - Shanghai high speed railway to the National People's Congress in December 1990. In 1995, Premier Li Peng announced that preparatory work on the Beijing Shanghai HSR would begin in the 9th Five Year Plan (1996–2000). The MOR's initial design for the Jinghu high-speed line was completed and led to a suggestion report for state approval in June 1998. The construction plan finally been determined at 2004 beginning after five years' debate on whether to use rail track or the maglev technology. On 7 January 2004, at a regular meeting of the State Council chaired by Premier Wen Jiabao, the nation's "medium-and-long term plan of railway network" was discussed and passed in principle. The plan comprised a high-speed railway network consisting of four north-south lines and four west-east lines, with the BeijingShanghai railway placed at the top. When China first decided to develop high speed rail, the original idea was to research and develop domestic technology to reach a world standard. In 1998, China started the construction of its first high speed rail, the QinhuangdaoShenyang Passenger Dedicated line (Qinshen PDL), which was opened in 2003, with a designed speed of 200 km/h, and several manufacturers' prototypes meant to reach 300 km/h were tested here. They are "China Star", "Pioneer" and latterly "Changbai Mountain". However, the fastest operating speed achieved by "Changbai Mountain" is only 180 km/h. As the development of domestic technology was not as successful as expected, in order to realize the high speed railway service as soon as possible, the MOR decided to import HSR trains and technology from Europe and Japan. Most of the trainsets
are manufactured by Chinese companies as technology transfer agreements contracted as part of the deals with foreigner companies. In April 2007, China launched the sixth "speed up" campaigns. CRH (China Railway High-speed) service firstly opened at some 6,003 km of tracks, 52 CRH trainsets (CRH1, CRH2 andCRH5) were put into operation, service as 280 train numbers. By 2007, the top speed of Qinshen PDL was increased to 250 km/h, on 19 April 2008 China opened its second High Speed Rail, the Hening (Hefei-Nanjing) PDL, also with a top speed of 250 km/h, on 1 August 2008, the Beijing-Tianjin Intercity line (Jingjin ICL) was opened, and its top speed reached 350 km/h. A new trainset, CRH2C and CRH3C, with designed top operating speed 350 km/h, were first put into commercial service. Currently the fastest CRH Service is at the Wuguang (Wuhan-Guangzhou) PDL, opened by 26 December 2009. It travels 968 kilometres (601 mi) in 3 hours reaching top speeds of 350 kilometres per hour (220 mph) and averaging 310 kilometres per hour (190 mph). On 26 October 2010, China opened its 15th High speed rail, the Shanghai-Hangzhou PDL, and the CRH380A trainset manufactured by CSR Sifang started regular service. the Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway is set to open by July 2011, The railway line is the first one in the world with designed top speed of 380 km/h in commercial service. and will use the new CRH380B train made by Changchun Railway Vehicle and Tangshan Railway Vehicle. Currently China has the world’s longest high-speed rail network with about 7,431 km (4,618 mi) of routes capable for 200+ km/h running in service as of October 2010, including 2,197 km (1，365 mi) of rail lines with top speeds of 350 km/h (220 mph). According to the MOR's “Mid-to-Long Term Railway Network Plan (revised in 2008)”, the National High-Speed Rail Grid is composed of 8 highspeed rail corridors, 4 north-south corridors and 4 east-west corridors; together with some less important lines the total length will be about 12,000 km (7,456 mi). Definition of high-speed rail See also: Passenger rail terminology There are a number of different definitions for high-speed rail in use worldwide and there is no single standard, however there are certain parameters that are unique to high-speed rail. UIC (International Union of Railways) and EC Directive 96/58 define high-speed rail as systems of rolling stock and infrastructure which
regularly operate at or above 250 km/h on new tracks, or 200 km/h on existing tracks. However lower speeds can be required by local constraints. A definitive aspect of high speed rail is the use of continuous welded rail which reduces track vibrations and discrepancies between rail segments enough to allow trains to pass at speeds in excess of 200 km/h (120 mph). Depending on design speed, banking and the forces deemed acceptable to the passengers, curves radius is above 4.5 kilometers, and for lines capable for 350 km/h running, typically at 7 to 9 kilometers. There are also a number of characteristics common to most high-speed rail systems but not required: almost all are electrically driven via overhead lines and have in-cab signalling as well as no level crossings. Advanced switches using very low entry and frog angles are also often used. Magnetic levitation trains fall under the category of high-speed rail due to their association with track oriented vehicles; however their inability to operate on conventional 'rails' often leads to their classification in a separate category. In the United States, high-speed rail is defined as having a speed above 110 mph (180 km/h) by the United States Federal Railroad Administration In Japan, high speed Shinkansen lines use standard gauge track rather than narrow gauge track used on most other Japanese lines. These travel at speeds in excess of 260 km/h (160 mph) without level crossings. In China, there are two grades of high speed lines: Firstly, slower lines running at speeds of between 200 and 250 km/h (120 and 160 mph) which may comprise either freight or passenger trains. Secondly, passenger dedicated high speed rail lines operating at top speeds of up to 350 km/h (220 mph).
500 Series Shinkansen in Japan
Siemens Velaro in Barcelona, Spain In both Japan and France the initial impetus for the introduction of high speed rail was the need for additional capacity to meet increasing demand for passenger rail travel. By the mid-1950s, the Tōkaidō Main Line in Japan was operating at full capacity, and construction of the first segment of the Tōkaidō Shinkansen between Tokyo and Osaka started in 1959. The Tōkaidō Shinkansen opened on October 1, 1964, in time for the Tokyo Olympics. The situation for the first line in Japan was different from the subsequent lines. The route was already so densely populated and rail oriented that highway development would be extremely costly and one single line between Tokyo and Osaka could bring service to over half the nation's population. In 1959 that was nearly 45 million people; today it is well over 65 million. The Tōkaidō Shinkansen line is the most heavily traveled high speed line in the world and still transports more passengers than all other high speed rail lines in the world combined. Subsequent lines in Japan had a rationale more similar to situations in Europe. In France the main line between Paris and Lyon was projected to run out of capacity by 1970. In both cases the choice to build a completely separate passenger-only line allowed for the much straighter higher speed lines. The dramatically reduced
travel times on both lines, bringing cities within three hours of one another, caused explosions in ridership. It was the commercial success of both lines that inspired those countries and their economies to expand or start high speed rail networks. In post-World War II United States, improvements in automobiles and aircraft made those means practical for a greater portion of the population than previously. In Europe and Japan, emphasis was given to rebuilding the railways after the war. In the United States, emphasis was given to airports and an extensive national interstate highway system. The U.S. railway had been less competitive as a means of transportation. The lower population density in North America allowed easier construction of a national highway network, but mass highway construction would not have been as easy in the high population densities of the European nations and Japan. Presently, however, as energy costs continue to increase, rail ridership is now increasing across the United States. In China, the plans for the largest high-speed railway network in history were driven by a combination of capacity constraints on existing lines and a desire to shorten journey times across the nation, whilst promoting development along the route. The construction schedule was significantly accelerated due to additional funding in the 4 trillion CNY stimulus package of 2008 and a number of lines are due to be completed by 2013. Travel by rail becomes more competitive in areas of higher population density or where gasoline is expensive, because conventional trains are more fuel efficient than cars when ridership is high, similar to other forms of mass transit. Very few high-speed trains consume diesel or other fossil fuels but the power stations that provide electric trains with power can consume fossil fuels. In Japan and France, with very extensive high speed rail networks, a large proportion of electricity comes from nuclear power. Even using electricity generated from coal or oil, high speed trains are significantly more fuel efficient per passenger per kilometer traveled than the typical automobile because of economies of scale in generator technology.
For example, on the Eurostar, emissions from travelling by train from London to
Paris are 90% lower than by flying. Rail networks, like highways, require large fixed capital investments and thus require a blend of high density and government investment to be competitive against existing capital infrastructure for aircraft and automobiles. Urban density and mass transit have been key factors in the success of European and Japanese railway transport, especially in countries such as the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, Spainand France.
Alstom's TGV has been adapted for use in South Korea
KTX-Sancheon, a South Korean high-speed train at Seoul Station. Much of the technology behind high-speed rail is an improved application of mature standard gauge rail technology using overhead electrification. By building a new rail infrastructure with 20th century engineering, including elimination of constrictions such as roadway at-grade (level) crossings, frequent stops, a succession of curves and reverse curves, and not sharing the right-of-way with freight or slower passenger trains, higher speeds (250–320 km/h) are maintained. Total cost of ownership of HSR systems is generally lower than the total costs of competing alternatives (new highway or air capacity). Japanese systems are often more expensive than their counterparts but more comprehensive because they have their own dedicated elevated guideway, no traffic crossings, and disaster monitoring systems. Despite this the largest of the Japanese system's cost is related to the boring of tunnels through mountains, as was in Taiwan. Recent advances in wheeled trains in the last few decades have pushed the speed limits past 400 km/h, among the advances being tilting trainsets, aerodynamic designs (to reduce drag, lift, and
noise), air brakes, regenerative braking, stronger engines, dynamic weight shifting, etc. Some of the advances were to fix problems, like the Eschede disaster. European high-speed routes typically combine segments on new track, where the train runs at full commercial speed, with some sections of older track on the extremities of the route, near cities. In France, the cost of construction (which was €10 million/km (US$15.1 million/km) for LGV Est) is minimised by adopting steeper grades rather than building tunnels and viaducts. However, in mountainous Switzerland, tunnels are inevitable. Because the lines are dedicated to passengers, gradients of 3.5%, rather than the previous maximum of 1–1.5% for mixed traffic, are used. Possibly more expensive land is acquired in order to build straighter lines which minimize line construction as well as operating and maintenance costs. In other countries high-speed rail was built without those economies so that the railway can also support other traffic, such as freight. Experience has shown however, that trains of significantly different speeds cause massive decreases of line capacity. As a result, mixed-traffic lines are usually reserved for high-speed passenger trains during the daytime, while freight trains go at night. In some cases, night-time high-speed trains are even diverted to lower speed lines in favour of freight traffic. High-speed railways by region
Operational high-speed lines in Europe 280 km/h 200–230 km/h
High-speed lines in East Asia 249 km/h
Main article: High-speed rail by country See also: Planned high-speed rail by country The following table shows all high speed dedicated lines (speed over 250 km/h) in service and under construction, listed by country. Based on UIC figures (International Union of Railways), it has been updated with other sources (see discussion). Since the purpose is to convey updated information with unified criteria, planned lines are not included. Country China Spain Japan France Germany Italy Turkey South Korea Taiwan Belgium The Netherlands United Kingdom Switzerland In operation (km)
Under construction (km) 6696 (approx.) 2219
Total Country (km) 10025 (approx.) 3744 2496 2106 1410 923 745 412 345 209 120 113 107
4326 1525 1986 1872 1032 923 235 330 345 209 120 113 35
510 234 378 0 510 82 0 0 0 0 72
Maximum speed records
Main article: Land speed record for railed vehicles Maximum speed in service
MLX01 maglev train 581 km/h (current world record holder)
World speed record holding (574.8 km/h/357mph) TGV — the V150
The Shanghai Maglev Train reaches top speeds of 431 km/h, the fastest high-speed train in service in the world. The term "maximum speed" has many meanings here. It can reflect:
maximum average speed between two scheduled stops based on the running
times in timetables - daily operation.
maximum speed at which a train is allowed to run safely as set by law or the maximum speed at which an unmodified train is proved to be capable of the maximum speed a specially modified train is proved to be capable of
policy on a straight section in daily service with minimal constraints (MOR)
running. A one time specially modified system and trainset record (see land speed record for railed vehicles) was set by the manned TGV's 574.8 km/h run. This run was for proof of concept and engineering, not to test normal passenger service. The record for railed vehicles is 10,325 km/h (6,416 mph) by an unmanned rocket sled by the United States Air Force. The maximum speed an unmodified train is capable of running was set by the nonwheeled 581 km/h JR-Maglev MLX01 run in 2003. However, even this is not necessarily suitable for passenger operation as there can be concerns such as noise, cost, deceleration time in an emergency, etc. The Shanghai Maglev Train reaches 431 km/h during its daily service between Longyang Road and Pudong International Airport, holds the speed record of any commercial train services. Besides maglev, the fastest maximum operating speed (MOR) of any segment of any high speed rail line is currently 350 km/h (221 mph), a record held by multiple lines in China, first achieved by the Beijing–Tianjin Intercity Railway in August 2008. In October 2010, the trains on Shanghai–Hangzhou HighSpeed Railway have shown an unmodified capability of running 416.6 km/h in tests, and thus have been set to run 350 km/h in normal operation. The highest scheduled average speed between two scheduled stops is held by China Railway High-speed service on Wuhan-Guangzhou High-Speed Railway.
Starting from December 26, 2009, until January 29, 2010, non-stop trains on this
line cover the 922-km journey in 2 hours, 57 minutes, at an average speed of 312.5 km/h from Wuhan to Guangzhou North. The average speed slowed down to 309 km/h for a longer 968 km journey when Guangzhou South, the new terminal of the line, was opened on January 30, 2010. Since July 1, 2010, all non-stop trains were canceled and the fastest trains run at an average speed of 296 km/h with one stop in Changsha South. The trains cover Guangzhou South and Changsha South section in 02h02m, hold the speed record at 305 km/h.
Records in trial runs
1963 - Japan - Shinkansen - 256 km/h (First country to develop HSR 1965 - West Germany - Class 103 locomotives - 200 km/h (Second country to 1967 - France - TGV 001 - 318 km/h (Third country to develop HSR 1972 - Japan - Shinkansen - 286 km/h 1974 - West Germany - EET-01 – 230 km/h 1974 - France - Aérotrain - 430.2 km/h (high speed monorail train) 1975 - West Germany - Comet - 401.3 km/h (steam rocket propulsion) 1978 - Japan - HSST-01 - 307.8 km/h (Auxiliary rocket propulsion) 1978 - Japan - HSST-02 – 110 km/h 1979 - Japan - Shinkansen - 319 km/h 1979 - Japan - ML-500R (unmanned) - 504 km/h 1979 - Japan - ML-500R (unmanned) - 517 km/h 1981 - France - TGV - 380 km/h 1985 - West Germany - InterCityExperimental - 324 km/h 1987 - Japan - MLU001 (manned) - 400.8 km/h 1988 - West Germany - InterCityExperimental - 406 km/h 1988 - Italy - ETR 500-X - 319 km/h (Fourth country to develop HSR 1988 - West Germany - TR-06 - 412.6 km/h 1989 - West Germany - TR-07 - 436 km/h 1990 - France - TGV - 515.3 km/h 1992 - Japan - Shinkansen - 350 km/h 1993 - Japan - Shinkansen - 425 km/h 1993 - Germany - TR-07 - 450 km/h 1994 - Japan - MLU002N - 431 km/h 1996 - Japan - Shinkansen - 446 km/h 1997 - Japan - MLX01 - 550 km/h 1999 - Japan - MLX01 - 552 km/h
develop HSR technology)
2002 - Spain - AVE S-102 (Talgo 350) - 362 km/h (Fifth country to develop 2002 - China - China Star - 321 km/h (Sixth country to develop HSR 2003 - Germany (train)- China (line) - Siemens Transrapid 08 – 501 km/h 2003 - Japan - MLX01 - 581 km/h (current absolute world record holder) 2004 - South Korea - HSR-350x - 352.4 km/h (Seventh country to develop 2006 - Germany (train) - Spain (line) - AVE S-103 (Siemens Velaro) - 404 km/h 2007 - France - V150 - 574.8 km/h (current world record holder on 2007 - Japan (train) - Republic of China (Taiwan) (line) - 700T series train 2008 - Germany (train,manufactured in China) - China (line) - CRH3 2010 - China - CRH380A - 416.6 km/h 2010 - China - CRH380AL - 486.1 km/h (current world record holder for
(unmodified commercial trainset)
unmodified commercial trainset) Target areas for high-speed trains
Density of High-speed railway in Europe. km per million inhabitants.
Density of High-speed railway in East-Asia. km per million inhabitants.
Taiwan's Japanese-built 300 km/h operating, 350 km/h capable 700T series train The early target areas, identified by France, Japan, and the U.S., were connections between pairs of large cities. In France, this wasParis–Lyon, in Japan, Tokyo–Osaka, and in the U.S. the proposals are in high-density areas. The only rail service at present in the U.S. using high-speed trains is the Acela Express in the Northeast Corridor between Boston, New York and Washington, D.C.; it uses tilting trains to achieve speeds of up to 240 km/h (150 mph) on existing tracks. Chicago, with its central location and metropolitan population of approximately 10 million people, is envisioned as the hub of a national high-speed rail network in the U.S. The beginning Midwest phases study aMinneapolis-Milwaukee-Chicago-Detroit link; a Kansas City-St Louis-Chicago link; and a Chicago-Indianapolis-CincinnatiColumbus, OH link. In Europe, South Korea, and Japan, dense networks of city subways and railways connect seamlessly with high speed rail lines. Some argue[who?] that cities lacking dense intra-city rail infrastructure, like some cities in the USA, would find low ridership for high speed rail. The argument is that it is incompatible with existing automobile infrastructure. (People will want to drive when traveling in city, so they might as well drive the entire trip). However, others contend that this does not
square with the high use of rail transport currently in the Northeast Corridor, where many people living in cities outside the rail link, drive to the commuter train and then commute by train the rest of the way, similar to the way many people drive to an airport, park their cars and then fly to their final destination. Car rentals and taxis can also supplement local public transportation. Increased commercial development is also projected near the destination stations. Since in Japan intra-city rail daily usage per capita is the highest, it follows naturally that ridership of 6 billion passengersexceeds the French TGV of 1 billion (until 2003), the only other system to reach a billion cumulative passengers. For comparison, the world's fleet of 22,685 aircraft carried 2.1 billion passengers in 2006, according to International Civil Aviation Organization. The California High-Speed Rail Authority is currently planning lines from the San Francisco Bay and Sacramento to Los Angeles and Irvine via the Central Valley, as well as a line from Los Angeles to San Diego via the Inland Empire. The Texas High Speed Rail and Transportation Corporation strives to bring Texas an innovative high-speed rail and multimodal transportation corridor. The Corporation developed the Texas T-Bone and Brazos Express corridors to link Central Texas. New York State Senator Caesar Trunzo announced a long-term plan to bring high-speed rail service between Buffalo and New York City, via Albany, to under three hours. Later high speed rail lines, such as the LGV Atlantique, the LGV Est, and most high speed lines in Germany, were designed as feeder routes branching into conventional rail lines, serving a larger number of medium-sized cities. A side effect of the first high-speed rail lines in France was the opening up of previously isolated regions to fast economic development. Some newer high-speed lines have been planned primarily for this purpose, such as the Madrid–Sevilla line and the proposed Amsterdam–Groningenline. Cities relatively close to a major city may see an increase in population, but those farther away may actually lose population (except for tourist spots), having a ripple effect on local economies. Five years after construction began on the line, the first Japanese high-speed rail line opened on the eve of the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, connecting the capital with Osaka. The first French high-speed rail line, or Ligne à grande vitesse (LGV), was opened in 1981 by SNCF, the French rail agency, planning starting in 1966 and construction in 1976.
'Market segmentation has principally focused on the business travel market. The French original focus on business travelers is reflected by the early design of the TGV trains, including the bar car. Pleasure travel was to be a secondary market; now many of the French extensions connect with vacation beaches on the Atlantic and Mediterranean, as well as major amusement parks and also the very popular Alpine ski resorts in France or Switzerland. Friday evenings are the peak time for TGVs (train à grande vitesse) (Metzler, 1992). The system has lowered prices on long distance travel to compete more effectively with air services, and as a result some cities within an hour of Paris by TGV have become commuter communities, thus increasing the market while restructuring land use.' (Levinson, D.) On the Paris - Lyon service, the number of passengers grew to impressive numbers justifying the introduction of double-decks coaches on the TGV trainsets. Other target areas include freight lines, such as the Trans-Siberian Railway in Russia, which would allow 3 day Far East to Europe service for freight as opposed to months by ship (but still slower than air), and allow just in time deliveries. High speed north-south freight lines in Switzerland are under construction, avoiding slow mountainous truck traffic, and lowering labour costs. In South America, Argentina has already assigned the construction of a high speed railway connecting the cities of Buenos Aires, Rosario and Cordoba. The Brazilian government is currently studying a high speed rail line connecting the cities Campinas and São Paulo to Rio de Janeiro. This high speed rail line will also connect these airports: Viracopos (Campinas), Guarulhos (São Paulo) and Galeao (Rio de Janeiro). Road rail parallel layout Road Rail Parallel Layout is an approach that uses the land around the road to pass the railway lines, like the HSR line from Paris to Lyon started in 1981 with 15% of its stretch along highway and Cologne to Frankfurt with 70%. Comparison with other modes of transport
Construction of the route through the Kösching forest, north of Ingolstadt, had a large environmental impact but with Road-Rail Parallel Layout this would be less than using multiple routes. High speed rail is often viewed as an isolated system and simply as advantageous or disadvantageous as compared to other transport systems, but all transport systems must work together to maximize benefits. A good HSR system has capacity for non-stop and local services and has good connectivity with other transport systems. HSR, like any transport system, is not inherently convenient, fast, clean, nor comfortable. All of this depends on design, implementation, maintenance, operation and funding. Operational smoothness is often more indicative of organizational discipline than technological prowess. Due to current infrastructure designs in many nations, there are constraints on the growth of the highway and air travel systems. Some key factors promoting HSR are that airports and highways have no room to expand, and are often overloaded. High-speed rail has the potential for high capacity on its fixed corridors (double decked E4 Series Shinkansen can carry 1,634 seated passengers, double that of an Airbus A380 in all economy class, and even more if standing passengers are allowed), and has the potential to relieve congestion on the other systems. Wellestablished high speed rail systems in use today are more environmentally friendly than air or road travel. This is due to:
displaced usage from more environmentally damaging modes of transport. lower energy consumption per passenger kilometer reduced land usage for a given capacity compared to motorways
Automobiles High-speed rail has the advantage over automobiles in that it can move passengers at speeds far faster than those allowed by car in most countries. The lower limit for HSR (200 km/h, 125 mph) is substantially faster than the highest road speed limit in most countries. Ignoring the few countries without a general speed limit, the speed limit is rarely higher than 130 km/h (80 mph). For journeys that connect city centre to city centre, HSR's advantage is increased due to the lower speed limits within most urban areas. Generally, the longer the journey, the better the time advantage of rail over road if going to the same destination. Moreover, train tracks permit a far higher throughput of passengers per hour than a road the same width. A high speed rail needs just a double track railway, one track for each direction. A typical capacity is 15 trains per hour and 800 passengers per train (as for the Eurostar sets), which implies a capacity of 12,000 passengers per hour in each direction. By way of contrast, the Highway Capacity Manual gives a maximum capacity for a single lane of highway of 2,250 passenger cars per hour (excluding trucks or RVs). Assuming an average vehicle occupancy of 1.57 people,
a standard twin track railway has a typical capacity 13% greater than a 6-lane
highway (3 lanes each way), while requiring only 40% of the land (1.0/3.0 versus 2.5/7.5 hectares per kilometer of direct/indirect land consumption). This means that typical passenger rail carries 2.83 times as many passengers per hour per meter (width) as a road. Some passenger rail systems, such as the Tokaido Shinkansen line in Japan, have much higher ratios (with as many as 20,000 passengers per hour per direction). Congested roadways tend to be commuter – these carry fewer than 1.57 persons per vehicle (Washington State Department of Transportation, for instance, uses 1.2 persons per vehicle) during commute times. Congestion also causes the maximum throughput of a lane to decrease. Aircraft Optimal distance
Spanish high speed, AVE Talgo-350. Maximum speed: 330 km/h (210 mph)
The ETR 500 "Frecciarossa" of the Italian Railways. Maximum speed: 300 km/h (190 mph) Takes 1 hour from downtown Milan to the centre of Bologna, while a plane+taxi takes an hour and a half to do the same distance. While commercial high-speed trains have maximum operating speeds much slower than jet aircraft, they have advantages over air travel mostly for relatively short distances, and can be an integral part of a transportation system. They also connect city centre rail stations to multiple other city centre rail stations (with an intermediate stop passenger loading/unloading time of one or two minutes), while air transport necessarily connects airports outside city centres to other airports outside city centres (with a stop time for intermediate destinations of 30 minutes to 1 hour). Both systems complement each other if they are well designed and maintained. HSR is best suited for journeys of 2 to 3 hours (250–900 km or about 150– 550 miles), for which the train can beat both air and car in this range. When traveling less than about 650 km (400 mi), the process of checking in and going through security screening at airports, as well as the journey to the airport itself makes the total air journey time no faster than HSR. However, anecdotally, competition authorities in Europe treat HSR for city pairs as competitive with passenger air at 4 to 4.5 hours, allowing a 1 hour flight at least 40 minutes at each
point for travel to and from the airport, check-in, security, boarding, disembarcation, baggage retrieval, and other waits. However, unless air travel is severely congested, merely providing a comparable service is often not a compelling financial basis for building an HSR system from scratch. As a rule of thumb, rail journeys need to be four hours or thereabouts to be competitive with air travel on journey time. One factor which may have a further bearing on HSR's competitiveness is the general lack of inconvenience when using HSR: For example the lack of a requirement to check baggage, or repeated queuing for check in, security and boarding as well as a typically high on-time reliability as compared to air. Separately, from a business traveler's perspective, HSR can offer amenities such as cellular phone network availability, booth tables, more elaborate power outlets (AC mains outlet vs DC 12 V outlet), more elaborate food service, no low altitude electronics ban, self service baggage storage area at end of car (eliminating checked baggage), and on for example Franco-German TGV-Est wireless internet broadband. There are routes where high-speed trains have totally beaten air transport, so that there are no air connections any more. Examples are Paris-Brussels and CologneFrankfurt in Europe, as well as Tokyo-Nagoya, Tokyo-Sendai and Tokyo-Niigata in Japan. If the train stops at a big airport, like Paris and Frankfurt, these short distance airplanes lose an extra advantage for the many travelers who want to go to the airport for a long-distance journey. Airplane tickets can include a train segment for the journey, with guaranteed rebooking if the connection is missed, like normal air travel. HSR is also competitive with cars on shorter distances, like 50–150 km for example for work commuting if there is road congestion or for people who have expensive parking fees at their work. For large cities this is common. Not every HSR route has such regional high speed trains, but it is common. Introduction of them enlarges the labour market around a large city. China Southern Airlines, China's largest airline, expects the construction of China's high speed railway network to impact on 25% of its route network in the coming years. Market shares Statistics from Europe indicate that air traffic is more sensitive than road traffic (car and bus) to competition from HSR, at least on journeys of 400 km and more –
perhaps because cars and buses are far more flexible than planes (on the shortest HSR journeys, like Augsburg–Munich, which is served by four ICE routes, air travel is no alternative). TGV Sud-Est reduced the travelling time Paris–Lyons from almost four to about two hours. The rail market share rose from 49 to 72 %. For air and road traffic, the market shares shrunk from 31 to 7 % and from 29 to 21 %, respectively. On the Madrid–Sevilla relation, the AVE connection rose the rail market share from 16 to 52 ; air traffic shrunk from 40 to 13 %; road traffic from 44 to 36 %. According to Peter Jorritsma, the rail marked share y compared to planes approximately can be computed as a function of the travelling time in minutes x by the formula y = 1 / (0.031*1.016^x + 1) According to this formula, a journey time of three hours gives 65 % market share. However, market shares are also influenced by ticket prices, so some air carriers have regained market shares by price slashing. In the US Northeast Corridor the rail market share between New York and Washington is lower than the formula indicates, 47 % even if the journey time by the Acela Express is only about 2h 45min. Other considerations Although air travel has higher speeds, more time is needed for taxiing, boarding (fewer doors), security check, luggage drop, and ticket check. Also rail stations are usually located nearer to urban centers than airports. These factors often offset the speed advantage of air travel for mid-distance trips. Construction costs Weather Rail travel has less weather dependency than air travel. If the rail system is welldesigned and well-operated, severe weather conditions such as heavy snow, heavy fog, and storms do not affect the journeys; whereas flights are generally canceled or delayed under these conditions. Nevertheless, snow and wind can cause some issues and can delay trains. Comfort Although comfort over air travel is often believed to be a trait of high speed rail because train seats are larger and it is easy for passengers to move around during the journey, the comfort advantage of rail is not inherent; it depends on the specific
implementation. For example, high speed trains which are not subject to compulsory reservation may carry some standing passengers. Airplanes do not allow standing passengers, so excess passengers are denied boarding. Train passengers can have the choice between standing or waiting for a bookable connection. Larger number of target areas From the operator's point of view, a single train can call at multiple stations, often far more stops than aircraft, and each stop takes much less down time. One train stopping pattern can allow a multitude of possible journeys, increasing the potential market. This increase in potential market allows the operator to schedule more frequent departures than the aircraft, and hence create another good reason for preference. Safety From the point of view of required traffic control systems and infrastructure, highspeed rail has the added advantage of being much simpler to control due to its predictable course, even at very high passenger loads; this issue is becoming more relevant as air traffic reaches its safe limit in busy airspaces over London, New York, and other large centers. However, it must be noted that high speed rail systems reduce (but do not eliminate
) the possibility of collisions with automobiles or
people, while other lower speed rail systems that a high speed train uses to reach high speed tracks may have level crossings.
Narrow gauge Narrow gauge trains tend to be slower than standard gauge trains for two main reasons:
firstly, the narrower track gauge is inherently a little less stable at hight
secondly, narrow gauge lines tend to have very sharp (say 100m) and low
speed curves as saving money is the prime rational for having narrow gauge in the first place. Tunisia is reputed to have the fastest metre gauge trains.
The Acela Express, currently the only high-speed rail line in the U.S., with a top speed of 150 mph (240 km/h)
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