When Elon Musk originally unveiled plans for the supersonic Hyperloop, he said that he didn’t plan to build it himself. Now the billionaire inventor has announced plans to construct a Hyperloop test track to help bring the next-gen transportation system to life. Musk announced the news on Twitter, as is his habit, saying that the test track will “most likely” be located in Texas. The Hyperloop is akin to a mega high-speed rail system, consisting of huge tubes mounted on tall pylons, with capsules to carry passengers at the speed of sound. The super high-speed transit system may one day provide stiff competition for airlines, because it promises to move people from Point A to Point B in about half the time it takes to fly.
As with most of his projects, Musk doesn’t wait around for other people to be ready to move forward. He’s a man who makes things happen. The new crowdsourced firm Hyperloop Transportation Technologies was founded for the project, and is responsible for developing plans to makes the tubes a reality. As such, Musk and his team are now building a test track to bring his lofty, speedy ideas to life. Around 100 engineers are working together on the projects, and most of them have day jobs at companies like NASA, Airbus, SpaceX, and Salesforce.
During a visit to Texas, Musk tweeted his announcement that they’d build a test track so that companies and student teams would have a place to try out their test pods. Dirk Ahlborn, the CEO of the new company, says he hopes to have a technical feasibility study finished in mid-2015. So far, the team has made progress in three main areas: the capsules, the stations, and the route.
Images via Hyperloop Transportation Technologies.