Hyperloop Transportation Technologies Inc., has announced that it will begin constructing a $150 million test track for the company's bullet train next month.
A full-sized prototype of the system will cover a five-mile stretch in Quay Valley in California and will take 32 months to complete, according to Hyperloop's chief operation officer Bibop Gabriele Gresta.
Speaking at an event called 'Transport to the Future' on Wednesday evening in London, Hyperloop's chief operation officer, Bibop Gabriele Gresta, explained the company's plans.
The Hyperloop system is made up of computer-automated capsules that are drawn by powerful vacuums and magnets through an elevated tube. If the prototype succeeds, passengers will be transported at speeds of up to 760 mph.
First conceived by billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk in August 2013, the company plans to eventually run the system from Los Angeles to the San Francisco Bay Area.
Powered by renewable energy, the train will generate a surplus solar, wind and kinetic power. Hyperloop hope to sell the additional energy in order to make the service profitable. "It will consume less electricity than we produce. We can resell electricity," Gresta told Dezeen magazine. "In this model it will allow us to recoup the entire investment in six to eight years depending on where you build it."
Empty capsules will be tested at top speeds and sent around the elevated tube. "We will crush every record on the ground," he added.
"You can substitute the entire flight industry from Los Angeles to San Francisco with one tube, four times," added Gresta. "Now if this will not disrupt the air industry I don't know what will."
If the project makes it past the testing phase, Hyperloop hopes to create dedicated pods that will be used to transport time sensitive objects, such as organs that are needed for transplants. It will also have the capacity to carry an estimated 3,400 passengers per hour across the Los Angeles region to the San Francisco Bay Area.
Hyperloop has plans to expand the transportation system globally—Gresta said that the company were considering a route from London to Glasgow, that would cost between $6 billion and $8 billion.
Hyperloop Transportation Technologies Inc. is owned by Dirk Ahlborn.
This article originally said that Hyperloop Transportation Technologies Inc. was owned by Elon Musk. It's been corrected to show that Dirk Ahlborn owns Hyperloop. It's also been corrected to reflect that the price of the track is $150 million not $6 billion.Try Newsweek: Subscription offers