Urban Transport

Hyperloop design to be revealed next month

Hyperloop design to be reveale...
Elon Musk will put an end to the guesswork by revealing alpha designs for the Hyperloop in August (Image: Shutterstock)
Elon Musk will put an end to the guesswork by revealing alpha designs for the Hyperloop in August (Image: Shutterstock)
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Elon Musk will put an end to the guesswork by revealing alpha designs for the Hyperloop in August (Image: Shutterstock)
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Elon Musk will put an end to the guesswork by revealing alpha designs for the Hyperloop in August (Image: Shutterstock)
John Gardi's Hyperloop sketch is descrobed by Musk as "the closest I've seen anyone guess so far"
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John Gardi's Hyperloop sketch is descrobed by Musk as "the closest I've seen anyone guess so far"

If like us, you've been eagerly anticipating more details on Elon Musk's proposed Hyperloop high-speed transport system, the wait is almost over. Musk has revealed via Twitter that the initial design will be published on August 12.

The CEO of Tesla and founder of SpaceX has previously described the system as a "cross between Concorde, a railgun and an air hockey table" that could take commuters from San Francisco to LA in around 30 minutes. While this latest teaser has refueled speculation on the nature of the transport system, it hasn't given us anything concrete to add to our previous discussion on how the Hyperloop might work.

More hints might be garnered from engineer John Gardi's diagram (below) which Musk acknowledged as the "the closest I've seen anyone guess so far," but we'll have to wait until August for the real deal, as well as more information on what level of involvement Musk plans to have in the project.

John Gardi's Hyperloop sketch is descrobed by Musk as "the closest I've seen anyone guess so far"
John Gardi's Hyperloop sketch is descrobed by Musk as "the closest I've seen anyone guess so far"

One further revelation did emerge from the Twitter feed however, with Musk stating that he intends to publish the Hyperloop as open source.

Musk has also called for "Critical feedback for improvements" and we are sure there will be no shortage in that department. Feel free to join the conversation in our comments section.

21 comments
Slowburn
I'm still having visions of Nikola Tesla's declined years.
Daryl McDougall
Hello Slowburn I think that is a fair call but you should probably wait until we find out just what the idea is. In my opinion Nicola Tesla's induction motor was the greatest idea of the 20th century. His later propositions not so much so and I think a valuable lesson.
JMS
Can some aerospace wind tunnel expert do a brief, simplified calculation of the power required to create a 900kph air flow in a 1800km (i.e. 1hr each way) loop tunnel/tube, say 10m in diameter? Lets assume we have the tube (or tunnnel). Perhaps this power alone sheds light on the cost viability.
MG127
this technology will require less power than creating a vacuum and you can easier seperate the tube into sections than the vacuum tube
Orgetorix
I still believe in www.swiss-metro.ch! Underground and therefore hard to be attacked by stupid types like terrorists!
elwardino
Can Elon convince Jerry Brown to hold off on His Bakersfield to Fresno multi billion dollar slow speed train for a couple of weeks then?
Cecil Hutchins
How much friction heat will 900kph air create in the tube? How will this be dissipated along 1800 km? How is the speed of the moving air maintained? See friction previously mentioned. How can this be protected from sabotage? Lots of issues to deal with but I do like the concept.
Mirmillion
It must be nice to have the chutzpa to put together these ideas and then use crowd-sourced ideas to refine them. Call it open source, call it democratic input but, at the end of it all, the guy with bulging chequing account is Mr. Musk. Maybe he will see his way clear to reward the people whose ideas have been capitalized on. In the long-haul (no pun) it will be good to reduce take-off and landing numbers, particularly at hub airports. The amount of spent fuel blown into the air by jetliners is mind boggling. Same goes for transport ships but that's another horizon.
Joseph Mertens
The Dyson company did a lot of the needed work with airflow induction. Commercial maglev trains already exist so Elon is just using the effects to create synergies of near frictionless weight carrying and waveform surfing and a Push Pull effect of traveling with the wind as you have near zero wind resistance if you are traveling at near the same speed. I doubt the train's front or rear will have a sharp aerodynamic profile. Kudo's to Elon Musk keep on KISS ing!
Brooks Hubbard
Orgetorix, That's what the Russians and British thought too... :[