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China's first smart high-speed railway to start operating this year: report

(Global Times)    10:01, March 12, 2019

The Beijing-Zhangjiakou high-speed railway, the world's first smart rail line, will run at speeds of up to 350 kilometers per hour and use cutting-edge technologies such as autonomous driving and smart maintenance. It is expected to be put into operation by the end of 2019.

The contact wires for the railway, linking the capital of China and the city in North China's Hebei Province that will stage most of the skiing events during the 2022 Winter Olympic Games, are under construction, domestic news site reported on Monday.

To ensure the safe operation of the railway, the power supply system will be equipped with advanced intelligent equipment, the report said.

Intelligent substations will be used along the entire Beijing-Zhangjiakou high-speed railway for the first time. They can monitor the status of the train in real time and deal with the faults online so as to make the train run more smoothly and reliably.

"The launch of this intelligent high-speed railway will lead us to a new era for high-speed railway, with more cutting-edge technologies such as smart operation and maintenance, and autonomous driving," Sun Zhang, a railway expert and professor at Shanghai Tongji University, told the Global Times on Monday.

Equipped with software, the train can detect abnormal situations and malfunctions and automatically slow down and stop.

"The whole system is also intelligent, including coordination between the train itself and the control center," he said, noting that the autonomous driving system will also set drivers free to play an auxiliary role.

The train will operate with service robots, which will help passengers carry bags and navigate, according to the report. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Liang Jun, Bianji)

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