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Courtesy of Hyperloop One

Hyperloop One — which wants to make Elon Musk's idea of super-fast, tube-based transportation a reality — thinks its successful second round of testing (completed last month) will help prove skeptics wrong. We caught up with its co-founders for an update:

"We went a lot faster," co-founder and President of Engineering Josh Giegel said when asked how he would sum up the significance of the tests for a relative or friend. The system reached 192 miles per hour and traveled farther than it did in its first set of tests.

It was the first time the system had been tested with a pod (which carries people and cargo), not just the sled that carries it.

"So now is the dawn of commercialization of hyperloop," said Shervin Pishevar, a co-founder of the company and its executive chairman. "We had to accomplish this to show governments around the world and our partners and everyone that hyperloop is real, we've built it."

What's next: More tests to refine the system and bring it closer to deployment. It has a long way to go to reach the targeted 650 miles per hour.

Challenges remain: Some of those are regulatory, like getting local authorities on board. Others are technical, like perfecting the vacuum system that makes the concept work. Not to mention financial: It's going to cost tens of billions of dollars to deploy it at any kind of scale.

Go deeper

5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Kellyanne Conway's parting power pointers

Kellyanne Conway addresses the 2020 Republican National Convention. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

Kellyanne Conway has seen power exercised as a pollster, campaign manager and senior counselor to President Trump. Now that his term in office has concluded, she shared her thoughts with Axios.

Why it matters: If there's a currency in this town, it's power, so we've asked several former Washington power brokers to share their best advice as a new administration and new Congress settle in.

5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

GOP holdouts press on with plans to crush Cheney

Screenshot of emails to a member of Congress from individuals who signed an Americans for Limited Government petition against Rep. Liz Cheney. Photo obtained by Axios

Pro-Trump holdouts in the House are forging ahead with an uphill campaign to oust Rep. Liz Cheney as head of the chamber's Republican caucus even though Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy told them to back down.

Why it matters: What happens next will be a test of McCarthy's party control and the sincerity of his opposition to the movement. Cheney (R-Wyo.) is seen as a potential leadership rival to the California Republican.

Democrats aim to punish House GOP for Capitol riot

Speaker Nancy Pelosi passes through a newly installed metal detector at the House floor entrance Thursday. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

House Democrats plan to take advantage of corporate efforts to cut funding for Republicans who opposed certifying the 2020 election results, with a plan to target vulnerable members in the pivotal 2022 midterms for their role in the Jan. 6 violence.

Why it matters: It's unclear whether the Democrats' strategy will manifest itself in ads or earned media in the targeted races or just be a stunt to raise money for themselves. But the Capitol violence will be central to the party's messaging as it seeks to maintain its narrow majorities in Congress.