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.