High-speed transportation company, Hyperloop One, successfully completed its first, full-scale test run this past spring. The company recently publicized what it’s calling a “Kitty Hawk moment”, which could be a major step forward in ground-based, mass-transit capable of extended and even supersonic speeds.
Image Source: The Washington Post
A Short, Successful Run
Early on the morning of May 12, at its “Devloop” development track in Nevada, Hyperloop One guided a wheel-mounted sled through 315 feet of simulated vacuum tube. The sled hit a peak speed of 70 mph and reached “nearly 2Gs of acceleration” during the 5.3 second trip. Over the final 3 seconds, the sled lifted to a glide, above the track, before slowing to a stop.
The Future Of Safe, Fast, And Low-Cost Travel?
The 70 mph speed of the first test is a fraction of what the Hyperloop may someday be capable of. When the project was originally proposed by Tesla and SpaceX founder, Elon Musk, he envisioned a safe, reliable, low-cost means of travel, in which pods reach speeds up to 760 mph. The transport would be made possible by a system of linear induction motors and air compression that would allow pods to carry passengers smoothly through great expanses of tubes.
Testing And Expansion Continues
With the successful completion of the inital run, Hyperloop One has built out its track motor so future tests can be run over 1,000 feet of the company’s current 1,640 foot-long test track. The next test will aim to reach speeds of 250 mph in the same simulated vacuum conditions. In a complete vacuum, the pod could to travel at speeds that are comparable or greater than those of commercial jets. Hyperloop One also recently revealed the passenger and cargo pods would be constructed from aluminum and carbon fiber and measure 28 feet in length.
As Hyperloop One continues to test and expand their system, are you eager to see the day you’ll be able to travel by vacuum tube? Comment and tell us what you think of this futuristic mode of transportation.