Color Style Kyle

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French Bullet Train – Fastest Way to a Heart Attack

Posted by Kyle Design on April 6, 2007

A French bullet train hit a new speed record for travel on conventional tracks this week. The V150 train hit 357.2 miles per hour, which is as fast as an airplane without actually taking flight. Thank goodness the trip goes quickly, because at these speeds images outside the train window become just a blur. No entertainment value there. You just get to sit back and focus on how fast your heart is beating and wonder which is likely to occur first – arrival at the station or a massive stress-induce heart attack. Alstom Transports, who built the train, had been hoping to beat the 361 mph record set in 2003 by one of Japan’s magnetically levitated bullet trains. The track and the engine were both modified for this attempt at the speed record, but the company actually has no plans to implement these changes for their standard trains. They do hope to land some contracts with China, which is planning to build 7,500 miles of high-speed railways in the coming years.

Compare these speeds to the all-time speed record of a conventional locomotive. Railroad Train Christmas Ornament features steam locomotive This was set by an LNER Class A4 4-6-2 Pacific steam train in the United Kingdom. On July 3, 1938, it reached 126 mph on a slight downhill gradient down Stoke Bank. Typically, steam trains ran at less than the 70 m.p.h. track speed limits. There are many great sites out there compiled by train buffs that detail all the facts about these magnificent machines. If you’re interested instead in a gift for one of these train buffs, then be sure to check our the Kyle Design Train Gifts page.

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