Las Vegas test takes Hyperloop from concept to reality


Hyperloop One has completed the first live open air test of the technology behind its new ultra high-speed transportation system.

In front of the world’s media, Hyperloop One, one of two organisations looking to turn the conceptual drawings of Tesla chief executive Elon Musk into a reality, carried out the first propulsion test in North Las Vegas on May 11.

Hyperloop One, formerly Hyperloop Technologies, also announced confirmation of $80 million of Series B funding and the addition of several high-profile partners. Supporters now include the likes of Deutsche Bahn, Arup, GE Ventures, SYSTRA and AECOM.

In a statement, SYSTRA said it would be looking at the technical and financial feasibility of building Hyperloop systems in France, Russia, the CIS countries and the Middle East.

Mathieu Dunant, executive vice-president France for SYSTRA, said the company “could not turn down the opportunity to participate in a project that is set to revolutionise transport systems in the future”.

Hyperloop, which was first proposed by Musk in 2013, is made up of a series of what are called reduced-pressure tubes. Like a conventional maglev system, capsules within the tubes run along the top of a magnetic field. However, the reduced resistance in the tubes would allow the vehicles to reach much faster speeds than exposed maglev systems.

A second company, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT), is also developing a Hyperloop system based on Musk’s brief. It hopes to build a test network as part of a new sustainable community development in Quay Valley, California.