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Almost Faster Than Superman: France Rail Train Sets New World Record
A French high-speed train has smashed the world speed record on rails after reaching 357.2mph. The specially-designed bullet train easily topped the old speed record of 320mph, also set by a French train in 1990.

The double-decker TGV, short for "train a grande vitesse", hurtled along a new stretch of track from Paris towards Strasbourg as crowds watched from bridges over the line.

It had been equipped with larger wheels and a beefed-up 25,000-horsepower engine.

The souped-up train recorded 357.2mph on the speedometer - about the speed of a short-distance freight propeller plane. Britain's fastest Virgin trains reach a maximum speed of 125mph.

"We saw the countryside go by a little faster than we did during the tests," train driver Eric Pieczac said. "I'm proud to have fulfilled the mission." "Everything went very well," he added. Alain Cuccaroni, in charge of the technical aspects of testing, said the feat was about "more than just breaking a record".

He said technicians, wearing T-shirts emblazoned with "French excellence", would be able to collect data that would help them improve the safety and comfort of the TGV. France is keen to consolidate its reputation in the expanding market for high-speed technology as countries like China turn to bullet trains.

The TGV came within just 4mph of the absolute train speed record of 361mph, held by Japan's Maglev. Powerful magnetic fields propel the hovering Maglev train along a guideway without it ever touching the track.

Courtesy: sky.com

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