We all know that there are four conventional modes of transportation: rail, road, water, and air. Other modes also exist, including pipelines, cable transport, and space transport.
In August 2013, Elon Musk (of Tesla Motors and SpaceX fame) publicly released designs for a revolutionary high-speed transportation system named Hyperloop. A hyperloop is a sealed tube or system of tubes through which a pod may travel free of air resistance or friction conveying people or objects at high speed while being very efficient.
In this post, you will know some interesting facts about the 5th mode of transportation: Hyperloop.
Here is a list of some interesting facts about the 5th mode of transportation: Hyperloop!
►Elon Musk believes the Hyperloop concept might actually work better in a Martian environment
Elon Musk’s love for Space Exploration is not a secret. He has spoken about his plans of establishing a colony on mars which also involves planning cities and it’s mode of transport in his speech at Hyperloop Pod Competition. Here on Earth, the Hyperloop would rely on low-pressure steel tubes and a series of aluminum pod cars to whisk passengers between major cities at speeds of up to 1280 km/h (800 mph). But on Mars, according to Musk, you wouldn’t even need tubes.
As Musk said during the course of the award ceremony for the Hyperloop Pod Competition :
On Mars you basically just need a track. You might be able to just have a road, honestly. [It would] go pretty fast… It would obviously have to be electric because there’s no oxygen. You have to have really fast electric cars or trains or things.
►The Hyperloop concept has been explicitly “open-sourced” by Musk and SpaceX
The Hyperloop concept has been explicitly “open-sourced” by Musk and SpaceX, and others have been encouraged to take the ideas and further develop them so that he also get time to focus on his SpaceX program and take Tesla Motors further. This idea encouraged various companies or entrepreneurs to start their own startups on this project.
►The concept of transporting passengers in air-tight tubes is nothing new
In 1812 the British mechanical engineer and inventor George Medhurst wrote a book detailing his idea of transporting passengers and goods through air-tight tubes using air propulsion. Quite surprising, isn’t it!
►It is cheaper than the cost required to build a bullet train
The proposed budget for the project is $6B which is roughly one-tenth of the California High-Speed Rail Project’s budget. The operating cost too is cheap as it coasts along for about 90% of the travel time. The costs to set up and maintain the Hyperloop are much lower than the cost it takes to build and maintain a bullet train. The goal is to make it affordable for everyone.
►This mode of transportation will be a complete self-sustainable technology
Elon Musk says the ‘tubes’ covered with solar arrays produce more power than that is required to run the system including which the capsules travel through the tubes. The tubes are lined with Solar Panels and energy storage capacitors so that it doesn’t lose efficiency or power even under cloudy conditions. That makes it self-sustaining.
►There are several versions of Hyperloop with lots of companies working on this project
Eight companies have taken up the dare of developing a working Hyperloop system so far as concerned. Virgin Hyperloop One, TransPod, Arrivo, Hardt Global Mobility, Hyper Chariot and Zeleros are companies from the US and Europe working on this project. Some of them are also trying to work on this project in other countries along with their own country. DGWHyperloop is the only Indian company working on implementing the Hyperloop system across the nation.
►Presently, no specific dates are announced of its first test run
Hyperloop technology is still in development even though the basic concept has been around for many years. It’s still not clear where Hyperloops will actually be established but a number of companies have sketched out routes in the US, Europe, and elsewhere. Potential routes include New York to Washington DC, Pune to Mumbai, Kansas City to St Louis, Bratislava to Brno, Vijayawada, and Amaravati, and many more. At the moment, the earliest any Hyperloop is likely to be up and running is 2021.