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JRS Photos of the Month July 2024

Tōhoku Shinkansen

Although the Tōkaidō Shinkansen will always be an icon of Japan, the shinkansen trains running in the East of Japan are more interesting. The Tōhoku Shinkansen has the highest maximum operating speed of all the shinkansen lines at 320km/h. Kōriyama in Fukushima Prefecture is a good place to be able to take photos and videos of the various shinkansen types used on this line.

All Photos: Stephen Turner, 5th May 2024 at
Kōriyama Station.


JR East E6 Akita shinkansen series almost always operates with E5 series shinkansen on the Tōhoku Shinkansen, being attached / detached at Morioka. Although it looks similar to the E5, it is narrower to fit the smaller loading gauge of the Akita Shinkansen. It has a max speed of 320km/h (130km/h on the Akita Shinkansen)

JR East E8 Yamagata Shinkansen is JR East's latest shinkansen model. It will eventually replace the E3 series that is being phased out. It has a maximum speed of 300km/h (130km/h on the Yamagata shinkansen), and like the E6 is narrower. It can operate with E5 series on the Yamabiko / Tsubasa services. It is attached / detached at Fukushima for the Yamagata Shinkansen. In the current timetable it only operates 2 round trips a day, but this will increase to 4 later in the year.

JR East E3 Yamagata Shinkansen is now being phased out, but currently most Yamagata shinkansen services are operated by this type. It can work in conjunction with both E2 & E5 series, and also some services, particularly "extra" holiday services, are operated with just a single E3 unit. Max speed is 275km/h, 130km/h on the Yamagata shinkansen.

JR East E5 shinkansen, max operating speed of 320km/h is nowadays the main type used for Tōhoku Shinkansen services, being used on the Yamabiko, Nasuno as well as the fastest Hayabusa services, (there are only 10 E2 type remaining in the service). The JR Hokkaidō H5 is exactly the same as the JR East E5 and there are 4 of these units in operation.

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