Really fast future trains might not bother with wheels. They could ride on a cushion of air, like a hovercraft. The nose of the train squashes air underneath its belly as it jets along, and the squashed air lifts it above the ground. The Aerotrain already exists as an experimental vehicle.

What is a bullet train?

Japan’s fastest trains, the Shinkansen, were nicknamed bullet trains because of their pointy noses – and high speed! The fastest, Nozomi, travels at 300 kph. With no time wasted at airports, travelling by Nozomi can be quicker than flying by jet!

Amazing! One sled travelled at Mach 8. An unmanned rocket vehicle on rails achieved 9,851 kph in an American experiment in 1982. On straight track, it could make the eight-day Trans-Siberian trip in less than one hour!

Is it true? Some trains run on magnets.

Yes. Germany and Japan have both tested trains that use repelling magnets to float above the track. The track doesn’t wear out, and the trains can slip along at amazing speeds.

Are trains ‘green’?

Trains are less harmful to the environment than most other kinds of transport. They are particularly important in cities, where underground trains, trams and monorails can reduce pollution from cars, buses and taxis. For long distance journeys, trains use much less fuel than jet aircraft.

Picture Credit : Google