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Korea Train Express

The KTX-II on Seoul Station. Developed by South Korea, it is the world's fourth high-speed train to exceed the 350km/h mark.[1]
Korean name
Hangul 한국고속철도
Hanja 韓國高速鐵道
Revised Romanization Han-guk Gosok Cheoldo
McCune–Reischauer Han-guk Kosok Ch'ŏldo

The Korea Train eXpress (KTX) is South Korea's high-speed rail system, which connects the capital Seoul to Busan and Mokpo. Operated by Korail, the system's technology is largely based on the French TGV/LGV system, and has a top speed of 350 km/h, limited to 305 km/h [2][3][4] for the original KTX-I trainsets in regular service for safety.[5]

Korail's most recent trainsets, the KTX-II are based on the HSR-350x developed by South Korea, which can travel at over 350km/h. South Korea is currently developing the next-generation model, named HEMU-400X, which will be capable of travelling at over 400km/h by 2012.[6]

Contents

History

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First phase - Seoul to Busan

After 12 years of construction, service on the Gyeongbu Line (connecting Seoul to Busan via Daejeon and Daegu) and the Honam Line (Yongsan to Gwangju and Mokpo) opened on April 1, 2004. Initially there was high-speed track for only part of the distance (from Seoul to Daegu); the new service cut travel time between Seoul and Busan from the Saemaul-ho's 4 hours and 10 minutes to 2 hours and 40 minutes, and between Yongsan and Mokpo from 4 hours and 42 minutes to 2 hours and 58 minutes.[7]

The infrastructure and rolling stock were created in a technology transfer agreement between Alstom and a consortium of companies named Eukorail[8] with contributors including SNCF (training and supervision of infrastructure and operations),[9] Vossloh (rail fastenings),[9] and Celegec (Catenary).[9] Bechtel was also involved in project management.[10]

The first high speed trains in Korea were KTX-I trainsets of which 46 were built.

Second phase Busan - Daegu

KTX network map     Shared track (KTX)        Gyeongbu Line (KTX)       Gyeongbu Line (normal)       Honam Line (normal)

Construction of the second phase of the Gyeongbu Line, linking Daegu to Busan, started in June 2002, and is expected to be completed by the end of 2010.[11] The new section follows a different, more easterly route, with new stations planned for Gyeongju and Ulsan. A further improvement of the travel time to 2 hour and 10 minutes between Seoul and Busan is expected.[12]

Future network expansions

High-speed track for the Honam Line from Seoul via Osong to Gwangju and Mokpo is also planned, with construction to start in 2009 for tentative completion in 2014.[11]

KTX services running partly on ordinary track are planned for the Jeolla Line to Suncheon and Expo 2012 site Yeosu, branching from the main Honam Line at Iksan.[13] This line has a top speed of only 120 km/h, currently being increased to 180 km/h.[11] Operations may start as soon as 2009. The Samnangjin-Jinju line is also being doubled and electrified to allow KTX operations by 2014.[11]

Passenger numbers and usage

Test Ticket for KTX trial run
Geographical map of the South Korean High-speed rail network

When introduced in April 2004, KTX ridership was an average of 70,900 passengers per day, well short of initial expectations of 200,000. While earning an operational profit of about 2.1 billion won per day, this amount was insufficient to service the loans, as the construction cost grew from an initial estimate of 5 trillion to an actual 18 trillion Korean won (approx. 5 billion to 18 billion in 2004 US dollars). On January 14, 2005, Prime Minister Lee Hae Chan stated that KTX was a political failure.

However, ridership and market share increased continuously.[14] On January 9, 2006, Korail reported that average daily ridership in December 2005 had reached 104,600, an increase of almost 50%, with daily operating profit up to 2.8 billion won and financial breakeven expected by early 2007.[15] The 100-millionth rider was carried after 1116 days of operation on April 22, 2007, generating an income of 2.78 trillion won.[16] KTX finances moved into the black in 2007.[17]

In 2008, the average daily ridership was 104,000.[18] For comparison, the latest single-day ridership record is 183,000 passengers, achieved on 26 January 2009, the Korean New Year.[19]

The KTX celebrated five years of operation on April 22 2009.[20] In five years, KTX trains traveled 98.99 million kilometers, and carried 173,450,000 passengers.[20]

Year Passengers carried
2004[A] 19.88 million[16]
2005 32.37 million[16]
2006 36.49 million[16]
2007 37.286 million[21]
2008 38.02 million[18]

A April-December (line opened 1 April 2004)

For comparison, the French TGV carried 13.77 million passengers in its fourth year of service, though the population of the urban areas served was less than the population of cities served by KTX. The KTX has also proved highly popular with tourists and visitors on business.[22]

As noted with the TGV[23] and Eurostar[24] high speed train services abroad, the KTX achieved a similar, significant modal shift in its favour at the expense of other transport modes.

2003/4[14] 2004/5[14] 2006[25] 2008[20][26]
KTX 0% 50.4% 60.2% 63%
Conventional rail 37.9% 10.5% 5.5% 4.6%
Total rail 37.9% 60.9% 65.7% 67.6%
Airlines 42.2% 25.0% 19.8% 17%
Express bus 7.8% 4.7% 5.5% 7.3%
Passenger car 12.1% 9.4% 8.9% 8.1%
Total road 19.9% 14.1% 14.4% 15.4%

By 2007, provincial airports suffered from deficits after a drop in the number of passengers attributed to the KTX.[27] With lower ticket prices, by 2008, KTX has swallowed up around half of the airlines' previous demand between Seoul and Busan (falling from 5.3 million passengers in 2003 to 2.4 million).[28] Though some low-cost carriers failed and withdrew from the route, others still planned to enter competition even at the end of 2008.[29] Budget airlines achieved a 5.6% growth in August 2009 over the same month a year earlier while KTX ridership decreased by 1.3%, a trend change credited to the opening of Seoul Subway Line 9, which improved Gimpo Airport's connection to downtown Seoul.[30]

Accidents and technical issues

  • According to an investigation by the Grand National Party in 2006, the KTX broke down 160 times in the span of three years, an average of once per week.[31]
  • On 13 June 2007, 2 people on the street were slightly injured by ballast that was thrown up from the trackbed by a KTX train.[32]
  • On 03 Nov 2007, 2 KTX trains collided inside Busan Station.[33]
  • On 18 Feb 2009, about 330 concrete railway sleepers on the 96.9 kilometer-long railway line linking Daegu and Ulsan were found to be cracked the month before, according to an investigation by a committee of the National Assembly.[34]
  • Korea Rail Network Authority chosen Pandrol clips for KTX Rail Devices in 2nd phase section (Daegu-Busan, German Rheda2000 Track system[35]) without field tests.[36]

Rolling stock

The TGV derived KTX-I

KTX-I

The initial KTX-I trainsets, also known as TGV-K,[37] are based on the TGV Réseau.[38] 46 trains were built - the initial twelve in France by Alstom, the remainder in South Korea by Rotem.[39]

G7 Project

During the same period in which the original high speed lines were being built a consortium of Korean conglomerates and universities began the G7 project to develop technology to enable Korean competence and manufacture of high speed train sets. The prototype train HSR-350x (Hanvit 350) was a direct result of this project; on December 16, 2004, the HSR-350x achieved a top speed of 352.4 kilometers per hour.[40]

KTX-II

KTX-II

In 2006, Hyundai Rotem won an order for 10 KTX-II trainsets (a commercial development of the HSR 350x train) later increased to 19, destined for the Seoul-Mokpo, Iksan-Yeosu and Milyang-Masan lines.[41] Design speed is 330 km/h, and revenue service speed is 305 km/h. [42] The 10-car trains will consist of eight passenger cars and two power cars at both ends, and seat 363 passengers in two classes.[43]

On November 25, 2008, the first KTX-II set was revealed to the public in a roll-out ceremony at the Hyundai Rotem factory in Changwon.[44] The first six trainsets are scheduled to be delivered in June 2009.[41] Commercial service started on 2 March 2010.[45]

HEMU-400X

The next-generation South Korean high-speed train, named HEMU-400X (Highspeed Electric Multiple Unit - 400㎞/h eXperiment), is currently being developed by the Korean Railroad Research Institute and Hyundai Rotem in association with the Korea Institute of Construction & Transportation Evaluation and Planning (KICTEP), which will be capable of travelling at a speed of over 400km/h.[46]

Tickets & Seats

Korail issues several kinds of tickets for KTX. Usually, tickets are classified by the type of seats; First class, Standard and Family seat. Standard seats are classified again into forwarding way seat and reverse way seat. (No reverse way seats for First class) And several discount programs are on KTX like KR PASS.(season ticket for Foreigners)

Type of seats

  • First class
  • Theater class
  • Standard class
    • Forwarding way
    • Reverse way
  • Family seats (2 Forwarding and 2 reverse way seats)

Discount program

  • Discount card (7.5% ~ 30%)
    • Business card
    • Youth card
  • Discount by seats
    • Reverse way seat (5%)
    • Free seat (5%)
    • Family seat (37.5%)
  • Reservation discount
  • Special Discount
    • KR PASS : Korail's discount program for foreigners

See also

References

  1. ^ http://rinsider.clubferoviar.ro/en/afiseaza_stire.php?id=2820
  2. ^ "코레일 "KTX 최고시속 305㎞까지 올린다"" (in Korean). Chosun Ilbo. 2008-11-26. http://www.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2008/11/26/2008112600808.html. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  3. ^ "<분수대> 속도" (in Korean). Joongang Ilbo. 2008-11-28. http://article.joins.com/article/article.asp?Total_ID=3396420. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  4. ^ "코레일 “KTX 최고시속 305㎞까지 올린다”" (in Korean). Dong-a Ilbo. 2008-11-26. http://www.donga.com/fbin/output?rss=1&n=200811260430. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  5. ^ "Railroad Information". Korail Korean Railroad. http://info.korail.com/2007/eng/ein/ein01000/w_ein01100.jsp. Retrieved 2008-01-08. 
  6. ^ http://www.korea.net/news/news/NewsView.asp?serial_no=20070315002&part=107&SearchDay=
  7. ^ "KTX Overview" (in Korean). KTX website. http://ktx.korail.go.kr/overview2/index.html. Retrieved 2007-01-18. 
  8. ^ KTX opens for commercial service 1/4/2004 www.alstom.com
  9. ^ a b c SNCF International in South Korea 5/2008 www.sncf-international.net
  10. ^ Korea High Speed Rail www.bechtel.com
  11. ^ a b c d "Korea's railways face a bright future". Simmons-Boardman Publishing Corporation. 2008-07-01. Archived from the original on 2008-07-02. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BQQ/is_7_48/ai_n27948208?tag=untagged. Retrieved 2008-07-01. 
  12. ^ "호남고속철, 경부고속철 2단계 기본계획 확정" (in Korean). 동마. 2006-08-23. http://www.donga.com/fbin/output?n=200608230222. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  13. ^ "KTX takes the lead in Korea", David Briginshaw, International Railway Journal 1.1.2007
  14. ^ a b c "High Speed Rail Construction of Korea and Its Impact". Korea Research Insitute for Human Settlements. 2008. http://168.126.177.50/pub/docu/en/AD/ZA/ADZA2008AAN/ADZA-2008-AAN.PDF. Retrieved 2009-04-30. 
  15. ^ "KTX Tops 100,000 Passengers Per Day". The Korea Times. 2006-01-09. http://times.hankooki.com/lpage/nation/200601/kt2006010917353911990.htm. Retrieved 2006-12-15. 
  16. ^ a b c d "KTX이용객 1억명 돌파(2)" (in Korean). KTX Korail. 2007-04-22. http://ktx.korail.go.kr/ROOT/ktx/notices2/notices_view.jsp?num=127&page=2&field=wtitle&field_value=. Retrieved 2007-07-13. 
  17. ^ "Korea's Bullet Trains Celebrates 4th Year". The Chosun Ilbo. 2008-04-02. http://english.chosun.com/w21data/html/news/200804/200804020006.html. Retrieved 2009-02-24. 
  18. ^ a b "새마을·무궁화호 이용객 7년 만에 늘어". The Railroad News. Korail. 2009-01-23. http://railnews.korail.go.kr/20090104/11696.html. Retrieved 2009-02-24. 
  19. ^ "기상악화에도 귀성길 ‘철도’가 최고" (in Korean). Korail News. 2009-01-28. http://news.korail.com/publish/php/articleview.php?diaryDate=2009-01-31&idx=10558&section=1. Retrieved 2009-02-24. 
  20. ^ a b c "KTX celebrates its 5 year anniversary in S. Korea". The Hankyoreh. 2009-04-02. http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_business/347598.html. Retrieved 2009-04-23. 
  21. ^ "지난해 KTX 이용객 늘었다" (in Korean). The Chosun Ilbo. 2008-01-22. http://www.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2008/01/22/2008012200389.html. Retrieved 2009-02-24. 
  22. ^ "Bullet trains are attracting foreigners". JoongAng Daily. http://joongangdaily.joins.com/article/view.asp?aid=2904083. Retrieved 2009-04-26. 
  23. ^ "The regional impact of the TGV". Springer Netherlands. http://www.springerlink.com/content/w647557875572604/. Retrieved 2009-05-01. 
  24. ^ "Eurostar passenger numbers surge". Financial Times. 2008-01-10. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/67ed5b0c-bf1e-11dc-8c61-0000779fd2ac.html?nclick_check=1. 
  25. ^ "Launch of Korean High-Speed Railway and Efforts to Innovate Future Korean Railway". 48. Japan Railway & Transport Review. August 2007. http://www.jrtr.net/jrtr48/pdf/f30_Lee.pdf. Retrieved 2009-04-30. 
  26. ^ "KTX passengers rise 47% over a five-year duration". JoongAng Daily. 2009-04-01. http://joongangdaily.joins.com/article/view.asp?aid=2902964. Retrieved 2009-04-30. 
  27. ^ "Muan International Airport Has Incomplete Opening". Korea Times. 2007-11-08. http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2007/11/117_13379.html. Retrieved 2008-12-31. 
  28. ^ "Bullet trains steal planes’ thunder". JoongAng Daily. 2009-04-02. http://joongangdaily.joins.com/article/view.asp?aid=2903012. Retrieved 2009-11-30. 
  29. ^ "Budget Carriers Gear Up to Challenge KTX". Korea Times. 2008-12-25. https://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2008/12/119_36749.html. Retrieved 2008-12-31. 
  30. ^ "Budget airlines win passengers again". JoongAng Daily. 2009-10-21. http://joongangdaily.joins.com/article/view.asp?aid=2911520. Retrieved 2009-11-30. 
  31. ^ "KTX 고장나면 다른 차량 부품 떼어 "땜질"" (in Korean). Prime Business Journal. 2006-10-13. http://news.naver.com/main/read.nhn?mode=LPOD&mid=etc&oid=147&aid=0000014308. Retrieved 2006-12-15. 
  32. ^ "Head-on Collision">"KTX 선로서 ‘자갈’ 날벼락…2명 부상". KBS. 2007-06-13. http://news.kbs.co.kr/article/local/200706/20070614/1372511.html. Retrieved 2006-06-14. 
  33. ^ "Head-on Collision">"Head-on Collision". the Dong-A Ilbo. 2007-11-05. http://english.donga.com/srv/service.php3?biid=2007110532198&path_dir=20071105. Retrieved 2007-11-05. 
  34. ^ "Crippling Cracks Found in Ties on KTX Railway" (in English). Korea Times. 2009-02-19. http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2009/02/117_39885.html. 
  35. ^ RAIL.ONE achieves double project success in South Korea 22/10/2007 rheda-ls.com
  36. ^ "Report: KTX Rail Devices Chosen Without Field Tests "" (in English). Dong-A Ilbo. 2009-03-11. http://english.donga.com/srv/service.php3?bicode=020000&biid=2009031296398. Retrieved 2009-03-12. 
  37. ^ "Korea develops high-speed ambitions: a thorough programme of research and development will soon deliver results for Korea's rail industry in the form of the indigenous KTX II high-speed train. Dr Kihwan Kim of the Korea Railroad Research Institute explains the development of the new train". BNET (International Railway Journal). May 2008. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0BQQ/is_/ai_n25433622. Retrieved 2008-12-31. 
  38. ^ SNCF International in South Korea 5/2008, Page 2, www.sncf-international.net
  39. ^ "A TGV for Korea; The parties involved". Alstom. 2004-03-29. http://www.webmag.transport.alstom.com/eMag/externe/international/korea/ktx/mar2004/1/221.asp. Retrieved 2007-03-08. 
  40. ^ "HSR350x Tops 350km/h". KITECH. 2005-05-31. http://eng.kitech.re.kr/c6_info/index.php?mode=view&sub1=1&sub2=1&idx=14. Retrieved 2006-12-15. 
  41. ^ a b Chris Jackson (2008-09-05). "'We are making steady efforts to become a global leader'". Railway Gazette International. http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/single-view/view//we-are-making-steady-efforts-to-become-a-global-leader.html. Retrieved 2008-12-31. 
  42. ^ "(경제안테나) '3월 운행' 차세대 KTX-II 타보니" (in Korean). Seoul Broadcasting System. 2010-02-12. http://news.sbs.co.kr/section_news/news_read.jsp?news_id=N1000709822. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  43. ^ "KTX-II". Hyundai Rotem. http://www.rotem.co.kr/Eng/Common/data/high_speed.pdf. Retrieved 2009-01-19. 
  44. ^ "코레일, 25일 현대로템 창원공장서 출고행사…각계 인사 500여명 참석" (in Korean). Korail News. 2008-11-25. http://news.korail.com/main/php/search_view.php?idx=9923. Retrieved 2008-12-31. 
  45. ^ "'KTX-산천' 오늘(2일) 첫 운행" (in Korean). [http://news.korail.com.+2009-03-02. http://news.korail.com/main/php/search_view.php?idx=14816. Retrieved 2009-03-03. 
  46. ^ 400km/h High-Speed Train to be Unveiled by 2012 21/9/2009 hispeedtrain.re.kr

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