Qatar agrees to feasibility study for Gulf maglev

15th June 2005, Comments 0 comments

15 June 2005, BERLIN - A proposal to build a magnetic-levitation railway on the Gulf's southern shore moved a step forward on Tuesday when Qatar and Germany agreed to launch a feasibility study.

15 June 2005

BERLIN - A proposal to build a magnetic-levitation railway on the Gulf's southern shore moved a step forward on Tuesday when Qatar and Germany agreed to launch a feasibility study.

The technical and economic study on a 160-kilometre line was agreed by Qatar's prime minister, Sheikh Abdulla bin Khalifa al- Thani, and German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder in talks in Berlin.

Schroeder lobbied for the German-built Transrapid system on a Gulf visit in March. The trains hover on a field of magnetic force and are propelled by electromagnets in the track, allowing them to travel at very high speed.

The feasibility study will deal with a rail linking between Qatar and Bahrain over a new bridge connecting the two. Gulf officials have also considered an extension to the United Arab Emirates that would make the line 800 kilometres long.

In March, Schroeder invited regional officials to visit the test track in northwestern Germany. The world's first commercial Transrapid is operating in Shanghai, China. Transrapid is a joint venture between German companies Thyssen-Krupp and Siemens.

The two leaders said the planned modernisation of Qatar's transport infrastructure offered an "excellent opportunity" for cooperation with Germany. They also agreed to set up a joint economic commission.

DPA

Subject: German news

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