Academic: China plans commercial suspension rail lines
To help address traffic jams and pollution at scenic areas, China is planning to build commercial suspension railway lines using lithium-battery powered trains, according to a Chinese academic.
According to Zhai Wanming from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, a plan to build an over 10-kilometer-long elevated monorail line using lithium-battery trains is being finalized in southwest China's Guizhou province.
Another such line in Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province, is also in the planning process, said Zhai.
Last year, a lithium-battery powered train, with a speed of 60 km/h, successfully ran on a 1.4-km test monorail line designed by Zhai's team. So far, it has traveled more than 10,000 km in total.
The construction costs for suspension railways are less than one fifth that of subways, according to Zhai: "It is pollution-free and does not affect ground facilities."
Suspension railways are a new choice to solve traffic jams in cities and a good means of transport for visitors at scenic areas, he added.
Other cities across China, including Hancheng in northwest China's Shaanxi province, currently have elevated monorail construction plans.