The Linimo 

 '''Linimo''' ( リニモ ), formally the Aichi High-Speed Transit Tobu Kyuryo Line (愛知高速交通東部丘陵線) is a magnetic levitation train line in the city of Nagoya(Aichi Prefecture), Japan. 

The Construction was completed in time and the line was opened together with the 2005 Expo in Nagoya, as planned. The Linimo Maglev system today serves as local commuter line. 

The Linimo System 

The linear-motor magnetic-levitated Linimo train has a top speed of 100 km/h. Linimo is owned and operated by the Aichi Rapid Transit Co., Ltd. and the Aichi Kōsoku Kōtsū Kabushiki Kaisha. Construction of the line was supported by sginificant subsidies from the state. 

Linimo is considered the world's first commercial automated "Urban Maglev". The linear motor magnetic-levitated train has a top speed of 100 km/h, floating eight millimeters above the track when in motion, and is intended as an alternative to conventional systems. It is not designed to operate at high speed, as it is a commuter train system. 

Being the first commercial implementation of a new type of transport system, the line suffered a number of highly publicized technical breakdowns during the Expo, with far higher demand during peak hours than the line's carrying capacity of 4000 passengers/direction/hour. 

Technical Aspects 

The line has nine stations and currently is 8.9 km long, with a minimum operating radius of 75 m and a maximum gradient of 6%. 

The trains were designed by the Chubu HSST Development Corporation. One of the leading designers of the train was Mister K. Shibasaki. 

The track is said to have cost about Yen 60 billion ($US 574.8 million) and the aluminium Linimo trains, built by Nippon Sharyo with Sumitomo air suspensions, have cost approximately Yen 40.5 billion. Inoffical figures suggest that a 50% cost overrun took place. The HSST technology, based on magnetic attraction, is technically simpler than that needed for the high-speed superconducting maglev that is being developed by JR Central and Japan's Railway Technical Research Institute (RTRI). 

One of the main appeals of the maglev metro is the almost total absence of rolling noise. The track consists of two metal rails in the shape of an inverted U in which the magnetic field is held. An aluminium reaction plate is part of the linear induction propulsion. 

The switching system consists of steel girders forming a three-segment horizontally-rotating switching device. Each vehicle in a train has five magnetic "bogies". 

Media reported that Alstom Transport also signed a cooperation agreement with Itochu and Chubu HSST Development in 2002 to develop a second generation of Linimo trains in order to participate from know how and offer that new technology to markets worldwide. These reports have not been confirmed, though. 

Line and Stations

  • Fujigaoka Station (L01) - interchange to the Nagoya Municipal Subway|Nagoya Subway, Higashiyama Line. * Hanamizuki-dori Station (L02)
  • Irigaike-koen Station (L03)
  • Nagakute-kosenjo Station (L04)
  • Geidai-dori Station (L05)
  • Koen-nishi Station (L06)
  • Aichikyuhaku-kinen-koen Station ("Expo Memorial Park") (L07), formerly ''Banpaku-kaijo Station'' ("Expo Site")
  • Toji-shiryokan-minami Station (L08)
  • Yakusa Station (L09), formerly ''Banpaku-Yakusa Station'' - interchange to thr Aichi Loop Line


On March 19, 2005 and again on March 24, the number of people inside the trains exceeded the design capacity of 244 passengers/train and the train was unable to levitate. 

The line also has to be shut down for safety reasons when wind speed exceeds 25 m/s, a relatively common occurrence in the area. 

System History

  • October 3, 2001 - Permission to build the line granted
  • March 6, 2005 - Line opened to the public
  • March 19, March 24, 2005 - Automated stop of train operations due to passenger overload.
  • July 3, 2005 - Ten millionth passenger
  • April 1, 2006 - Stations L07 and L09 renamed


The US Government had the Linimo HSST System evaluated for an eventual application in the United States. 

* ''Report-USA-FTA-May-2004'' 

External links 

* Linimo