Idle Detroit 3 factories could switch to building solar-powered trains

The design would allow for speeds in excess of 200mph

The design would allow for speeds in excess of 200mph

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An ambitious project to bring high-speed rail to the U.S. is underway by private investors, with a route between Detroit and Lansing among the first rail lines on the drawing board. The Interstate Traveler company is currently wooing a state task force, with hopes of gaining permission to build an elevated, magnetized rail line along state freeways.

The rail system would use hydrogen-powered carriages and there’s a chance that the Detroit 3 carmakers could be called upon to build them. The trains would work by using a magnetic field for propulsion, and would draw on solar power to charge their batteries. They would run along an elevated track running alongside common highways. These could also be used as conduits for fiber-optic lines and other utilities.

The system will be designed to carry both passengers and freight, and initial research has shown that speeds of up to 200mph are possible.

While it may seem logical to allow private investors to build the infrastructure for the rail line, the project still has to be approved by state authorities. Under the proposal, the rail company would give half of its profits to the state, as well as areas where the rail line passes through.

If approval comes quick enough then the line could be in production by next year, at which point the 200 investors from Interstate Traveler will be shelling out about $15 million for every mile of the train line that is built, reports the Detroit Free Press.
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