Elon Musk’s hyperloop concept could become the fastest way to travel

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Following is a transcript of the video.

Narrator: This is the future of high-speed transportation. It’s 3 1/2 times faster than Japan’s Shinkansen bullet trains and even faster than a Boeing 747. It’s a hyperloop – magnetic pods levitating inside a tube at more than 1,000 kilometers per hour. In theory, you could go from LA to San Francisco in just 45 minutes with tickets less than $100 one way. This technology could make working and living in two different cities a norm, while also creating a world with less congestion and pollution.

Sara Luchian: Woo!

Josh Giegel: Yes!

Narrator: And with a successful human test ride in November 2020, we could be less than 10 years away from it becoming reality. The concept of the hyperloop became widely popular in 2013 thanks to Elon Musk’s 58-page “Hyperloop Alpha” paper that outlined the design, cost, and safety of the concept. But the technology to bring it all together commercially was only recently fine-tuned, namely magnetic levitation, or maglev.

Maglev is basically what allows a hyperloop to go incredibly fast, thanks to the lack of friction between the passenger-carrying pods and the tube-shaped track. The general concept is simple. Magnets lining the bottom of the pod repel the tube material, levitating the pod as it runs.

Giegel: As an engineer, I always get very excited about talking about magnetic levitation, electromagnetic propulsion.

Narrator: That’s Josh, a mechanical engineer who previously worked at SpaceX. He’s now the cofounder and CTO of Virgin Hyperloop. And this is Chuck. He’s the lead engineer at a different hyperloop company, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies. They’re both currently developing the best combination of magnets to create the smoothest ride possible, using passive or active maglev.

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Passive maglev uses permanent magnets in a specific configuration to create a constant magnetic current that levitates the pod, similar to the magnets you might’ve played with as a kid. Active maglev uses a combination of permanent magnets and electromagnets, the latter which can manipulate the electric current and the strength of that current.

Giegel: Basically, if I get too close, I drive it one way. If I get too far, I add some strength. And so you can kind of think of it as balancing out. And so if there’s bumps in the track, if there’s all this, I have a system which basically uses an active control system to make that ride smooth.

Narrator: And while you might think this sounds similar to existing maglev trains, the hyperloop concept removes a key element that holds a lot of trains and planes back: air resistance.

Giegel: So, if you ever stick your hand out a window when you’re driving in a car, imagine if there’s really no air there. You really wouldn’t feel that force pushing back your hand. And the same thing can be said for hyperloop.

Narrator: This is where vacuum pumps come in handy. Both companies are installing pumps along the tube. For HyperloopTT…

Chuck Michael: The vacuum pumps in our case are developed by Leybold, which invented the vacuum …read more

Source:: Businessinsider – Tech


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