The Chinese Railways has inaugurated the first fully electrified railway line in Tibet connecting the capital city of Lhasa to Nyingchi which is 15 Km from the Indo-Tibet border. The line is deigned for operating speeds of 160 Km/h.
Tibet is a high altitude plateau region. The Chinese railways has inaugurated a 435 km line running from the capital city of Lhasa to Nyingchi. Most of the line runs at an altitude of 3,000 m (more than 9,800 ft) above sea level. The line diverges from the Lhasa – Xigatse line and connects to Nyingchi crossing nine stations. The line runs mainly along the Yarlung Tsangpo river which forms the upper reached of the Brahmaputra river.
The Lhasa – Nyingchi line is a single track route capable of running trains at a speed of 160 Km/h. China Railways intends to operate three D category trains in each direction, operated by CR200JS-G electro-diesel trainset. These trains will cover the 435.5 km distance between the two cities in 3 and a half hours.
In addition to passenger trains, the route will also operate freight trains and has a capacity to carry 10 million tonnes of freight every year. The 435 Km route comprises 47 tunnels and 121 bridges with 16 crossings across the Yarlung Tsangpo. Interestingly, the tunnels and bridges account for 75% of the total route. The longest bridge is the Mingze bridge which is 3,376 m long. Six of the 121 bridges range between 11.5 and 17.3 km in length.