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World’s First Invisible Train to Be Launched in Japan in 2018



invisible train

Japan has traditionally been a leading country in technological progress and innovation. This time, a Japanese architect has unveiled a truly futuristic concept. Following the introduction of bullet trains that reach the speed up to 580 km (360 miles)/hour, an invisible train will be carrying passengers in Japan as early as in two years from now.

Pritzker Prize (which is often referred to as the Nobel Prize in architecture) winner Kazuyo Sejima has unveiled the concept of a chameleon-like train that blends into the surrounding landscape thanks to the incredible reflective property of its mirrored surfaces. The invisible train is scheduled to go into service in 2018 and is expected to cover more than 178 km (111 miles) across the country.

While this is Sejima’s first train design, she says that it’s both challenging and fascinating to design an object that should move through different environments rather than be located in a single spot, reports Fast Company. She envisions her futuristic train to be equally fun to ride as it is to watch how it blends into the surrounding scenery.

The limited express travels in a variety of different sceneries, from the mountains of Chichibu to the middle of Tokyo, and I thought it would be good if the train could gently co-exist with this variety of scenery,” Sejima is quoted from the official press release.

Till now, there is not much information about the details of this innovative design, but it is already known that it will have the potential to be applied to already existing trains. In fact, Sejima was recruited by railway company Seibu Railway Co for the project to redesign their Red Arrow trains that are used for commuter services in the Tokyo area. The company plans to celebrate its 100th anniversary, which falls in 2018, with this new line of invisible trains.

Thus, the old trains will be covered in mirrored panels and their unattractive boxy shape will be molded into a silver bullet. At the same time, the interior of the trains will be redesigned to offer the passengers a maximum level of comfort and feel like “a living room.”

“I also would like it to be a limited express where large numbers of people can all relax in comfort, in their own way, like a living room, so that they think to themselves ‘I look forward to riding that train again,” the architect said.

Watch the video below to learn more about the invisible train:

Image credit: Seibu Railway Co

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