BYD's first commercial monorail starts running

By Zhang Rui
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail, September 2, 2017
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China's leading new-energy carmaker BYD launched its first commercial monorail transit system as trains began running on Friday in Yinchuan, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region.

A launch ceremony of Yungui monorail held in Yinchuan, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, Aug. 31, 2017. [Photo/]

Yungui (literally meaning Cloud Rail) is a new milestone in China's urban transportation system as the first monorail operated by a Chinese company owning full proprietary intellectual property rights. It is also the first commercial operation out of a number of such monorail projects to be launched worldwide by BYD.

The suspended trains can run at a maximum speed of 80 kph. Compared with subways, such an above-surface system cost less and is less noisy. BYD invested 5 billion yuan and hired more than 1,000 engineers to develop the monorail project over a five-year period.

Speaking at the launch ceremony in Yinchuan on Thursday, vice mayor Han Jianglong said the city was developing the green and low carbon monorail system as a long term strategy, which would largely promote Yinchuan's innovation development, industry transformation and improve the city’s image.

The newly-launched monorail section in Yinchuan will first be used for the 9th China Flower Expo, now underway in the city and running until Oct. 7. The first section covers 5.67 kilometers, part of a first-phase program that calls for 50 kilometers of line. In future, the total city-wide network to be extended to 300 kilometers, according to the agreement signed by the local government and BYD.

BYD Chairman Wang Chuanfu said Yinchuan was a key connecting city in the Belt and Road initiative, so the launch of the Yungui train wuld set the standard for projects in other cities, "it will also set an example for future upgrading of cities all over the world and show how to use innovative technologies to resolve the headache of urban traffic jams."

Last October, BYD's first test monorail debuted in Shenzhen. Since then, many other smaller Chinese cities, such as Guilin, Guang'an, Shantou and Bengbu, have placed orders. In the next year, about 20 cities will have the Yungui system, according to the company. BYD will also build a similar monorail system in Iloilo, on the southern Philippines island of Panay.

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