Elon Musk Is Building a Hyperloop Test Track in Texas
Elon Musk just upped the ante in his quest to make hyperloop transport a reality with the announcement that he plans to build a 5 mile hyperloop test track in Texas. Speaking at the Texas Transportation forum, Musk announced he would be moving ahead with plans to build a facility somewhere in Texas, which would allow students to test out pods capable of travelling through his conceptual pressurized air-rail system. Even though he didn't divulge any specifics on location and timing, this is the biggest hyperloop announcement in quite some time.
Will be building a Hyperloop test track for companies and student teams to test out their pods. Most likely in Texas.— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 15, 2015
Should the plans go ahead, this test project will be the first physical steps towards realizing hyperloop transportation. Details around Musk's plans and the specifics for making hyperloop travel a reality are still fairly murky, but here's what we do know:
- A hyperloop system would work by pushing pressurized pods through a tube which is kept at low air pressure in order to minimize the resistance on the pods. With the pods hovering on a cushion of air, they are then passed through the tube at extreme speeds capable courtesy of the minimal resistance.
- Musk plans to implement a hyperloop system between Los Angeles and San Francisco
- Based on Musk's concept, a hyperloop pod could travel at around 760 MPH and complete the journey in just 35 minutes
- The Los Angeles to San Francisco loop would cost around $6 billion to implement
So how does Musk want to encourage students to take an interest in hyperloop development? His plan - seen below - all sounds a little bit Phantom Menace...
Also thinking of having an annual student Hyperloop pod racer competition, like Formula SAE http://t.co/HV9BLCoMb8— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 15, 2015