All About Japan

An Inside Look at the Next-Gen Bullet Train

Technology Transportation Trains Miyagi Tohoku

The press got to join a test-run of East Japan Railway Company's next-generation bullet train, ALFA-X, on October 27.

The biggest feature of the vehicles is their nose. The long noses help reduce air resistance and noise. JR East is also experimenting with window size. Some of the cars even come without windows. Engineers are now trying to improve both the car and the railroad track so they will be able to stand the speed and to ensure safety. The test run takes place between Sendai Station and Shin-Aomori Station, both in northern Japan.

On this day, the Shinkansen reached a speed of 382 kilometers per hour. The railway giant aims to run the vehicle at 360 kilometers per hour once the ALFA-X starts operations. They hope to complete the new bullet train by the spring of 2031.