In recent weeks, the Internet is literally filled with news about Hyperloop pneumatic high speed trains. What until recently seemed science fiction, may become reality in the coming years. We decided to look into all the intricacies of this ambitious project and to imagine what it's like to be carried in the air tube at a speed of more than a thousand kilometers per hour.
Roughly speaking, Hyperloop is a pneumatic train that moves along the elevated pipeline. Themselves "the cars" are passenger capsule, located inside the pipe. In the tube maintained at a pressure equal to one thousandth of atmospheric, that is close to vacuum. Due to the extremely low aerodynamic drag in a pipeline capsule can reach the speed of 1200 kilometers per hour. For comparison, this one and a half times the speed of a passenger plane Boeing 737, with its ~800 km/h. it is Assumed that the capsules themselves will work on solar batteries.
The idea is not that radically new. The forerunner of Hyperloop can be called the pneumatic tube system, which appeared in the middle of the 19th century. But it's one thing to move this way mail, and quite another to shove into the pipe of a living person. At different times by different inventors made several attempts to create a pneumatic, but they, unfortunately, did not succeed. Ideas about this type of transport is not released and fiction: this technology can be found, for example, in the works of the steampunk genre. But the most vivid image of the pneumatic definitely a Mermaid.
Unlikely now Hyperloop made all that noise, if not Elon "Iron man" Mask. He first mentioned the project in July 2012 PandoDaily event in Santa Monica. His story was impressive: speed Hyperloop two times exceeds the speed of the aircraft, and to work all this should be only solar powered. In 2013, Elon Musk introduced the first alpha version of the project. This humble video of SpaceX announced the start of work on Hyperloop.
Currently, the technology of pneumatic transport done by three competing teams. One of them, Hyperloop Technologies, has recently purchased a plot near Las Vegas for the construction of the test section of a pneumatic conveying system. According to the company, the work will be completed in the first quarter of 2016. First HT will test the prototype at the speed of 540 km/h on the route of one kilometer. Then it is planned to finish the route up to 3 miles and run Hyperloop at full speed.
Do not lag behind competitors and Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (Yes, engineers are very creative in choosing names). In their plans to build 8 kilometer pneumatic conduit between San Francisco and Los Angeles. But most importantly, HTT promise to test their system on live passengers in the next three years.
Third party "Hyperloop race" directly by Elon Musk and his company SpaceX. A year ago, in January of 2015, he said that they are ready to build your own test plot in Texas by June 2016. Its length will be five miles.
The words of the sound very optimistic, but now the project is at a very basic level. Still not even signed the official papers. And still want to believe that soon we will be able to ride on this transport of the future.