Research and development concerning railways aim to either increase speed for passenger transport systems or to allow higher axle loads. Developments in the last decades show a big success, in heavy haul as well as in high speed operation. While track was practically destroyed by the high speed record run of 1955 (331 km/h respectively 205 mph) the high speed record 2007 with 574.8 km/h (360 mph) did not cause any track problems. In this time period track could be developed towards higher stability and preciseness due to the implementation of mechanized maintenance and the subsequent implementation of heavier track structures.

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