Is Hyperloop the future of transport?
Eight years ago when SpaceX boss Elon Musk suggested the idea of hyperloop, nobody imagined that it would become real so soon. Businessman Richard Branson’s Virgin Hyperloop successfully conducted the first human test of a hyperloop system recently, and it has given hope to a better transport technology to the world.
The Hyperloop technology uses magnetic levitation to allow near-silent travel. During the human test, Virgin Hyperloop’s two employees Josh Giegel and Sara Luchian sat in a tube along a 500 meter test track near Las Vegas, Nevada, reaching a high speed of 173 kph in just over six seconds!
Faster than some planes!
Los Angeles-based Hyperloop envisions a future where floating pods packed with passengers and cargo hurtle through vacuum tubes at 600 miles an hour (966 kph) or faster. That would be twice as fast as a commercial jet flight and four times faster than a high-speed train.
Flying in the tunnel
The technology is designed to allow people to travel at incredibly high speeds inside sealed cars, called pods, shooting through a special tube.
Though trains need tracks to travel, Hyperloop would need tunnels. The Hyperloop technology uses magnets to remove friction to make the vehicle fly off the ground. It uses levitation to travel. Hyperloop vehicles avoid air pressure by removing almost all the air from inside the tube, which means there’s not much resistance and hence the pod can move much faster.
Did you know?
Tanay Manjrekar, a native of Pune and Virgin Hyperloop’s Power Electronics Specialist, became the first Indian to travel in a Hyperloop Pod at the DevLoop test facility at Las Vegas in the United States. Hyperloop is also being planned between Mumbai and Pune.