Railway Journey across Japan
Train Travel Today:
People and Technology Drive Japan’s Railways
The wonder of Japan’s railways goes far beyond the speed of the Shinkansen.
Other remarkable key elements include on-time performance, safety, comfort, and energy conservation—
all achieved while smoothly operating at mass-transit capacity.
The synergy of people and technology is the power that drives this outstanding train system.
Next-Generation Eco-Train “DENCHA”
Next-generation trains running on batteries have arrived with the “DENCHA” battery-powered electric cars developed by JR Kyushu. “DENCHA,” which stands for “DUAL ENERGY CHARGE TRAIN,” can recharge its batteries while running on electricity from overhead power lines so that it can keep going in areas without power. The mechanism also allows it to regenerate power from the braking system and can save energy and reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 40 to 50% compared with diesel trains on lines without electricity. There is also no exhaust gas.
Tokaido Shinkansen and Continued Evolution
“There is no end to the evolution of the Shinkansen,” says Ueno Masayuki, one of the people responsible for its development. JR Central collects detailed data on the operation of all of its trains and analyzes it constantly while performing other research with the aim of making the Shinkansen more comfortable, more accurate, and safer. The new N700S train slated for release in 2020 is the culmination of ideas conceived of by a group of engineers following such dedicated research. Let’s take a look at a few examples of evolution in the new Shinkansen.
This steady and constant evolution is the reason the Shinkansen remains the world’s premier train system after all these years.