Ever thought of waking up a little before sunrise to head to Chennai for breakfast and return to your office in Bengaluru well before the 9 am meeting?
Such a proposal, offering supersonic land travel to turn this scenario into reality, is awaiting a Central government nod. It would cost $1 billion compared to $12 billion for the Bullet Train expected to be ready by 2023.
High-pressure capsules, travelling in a partially-vacuumed tube at speeds up to 1,216 Km/hour, promise to transport people from one point to another in little over half the time taken by flights, charging less than half the price for the ticket. This transportation system is the Hyperloop Transportation System (HTS), promising speeds up to 1,216 km/hour – which means less than 30 minutes to cover 345 km from Bengaluru to Chennai.
The HTS relies completely on renewable energy. Solar panels atop the tube and wind turbines in the pylons generate surplus energy.
Bibop Gresta, co-founding chairman, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) which is developing the HTS, is in Bengaluru to attend the Carnegie Technology Summit 2016, told media, “The Hyperloop will be powered by a linear motor, similar to one that powers the Tesla. It will be in the needle of the capsule.” A linear motor provides a much more powerful propulsion; so in this case, that propulsion is significantly multiplied in the near-vacuum tube with no air friction – explaining such high speeds.
Gresta said he is in talks with the Centre, hoping to get land to set up a facility that would design and build the structures for the HTS. He has submitted a letter of intent to Union transport minister Nitin Gadkari. This followed the keen interest expressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in this transportation system during his last visit to Silicon Valley where he met Tesla founder Elon Musk, the Hyperloop concept being the latter’s brainchild. In 2013 he had open-sourced its basic design and currently there are 800 engineers (including 25 Indians) and several companies working on perfecting the technology.
Modi invited the concept to be tested between Mumbai and Pune, making India the first to put the concept to test outside of USA.
HTT experts said the tube line between Mumbai and Pune could be laid on the existing Central median, supported by pylons with a distance of 100 feet between them. Gresta has said once the go-ahead is obtained it would take just 38 months to have the project up and running between Mumbai and Pune, a road distance of 149 Km.
According to HTT website what is best about this transportation system is that no additional land would be required to set this project up. Thanks to the series of pylons supporting the tube, it can be built over land already in use for public transportation, such as on the medians of national highways and expressways – which means minimal interference with existing facilities.
This is what is being planned between Mumbai and Pune once the Centre’s go-ahead is obtained. This would also lead to significantly lower construction and operation costs compared with any other mass transportation system already in use. Optimal HTS service could see a capsule reaching a station every seven minutes, and a charge for travelling a distance of 500 Km could be less than Rs 2,000.
What is HTT?
Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, Inc. (HTT) was founded in November, 2013, birthed of JumpStartFund—a unique crowdfunding and crowdsourcing incubator platform that uses collective knowledge and assets to make ideas like Hyperloop™ a reality. HTT is a collaborative organization built within the egalitarian ecosystem of a company that values every one of its contributors—both individual and entity. Collaborations with groups such as Atkins, Leybold Corporation, and Deutsche Bahn have resulted in tremendous advancement of the Hyperloop™ transportation system, setting stage for commitment to an installation in Quay Valley, California.
HTT has an exclusive agreement with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for use their passive magnetic levitation system as the core of low-cost, safety-conscious construction and design in the Hyperloop™. The company is partnered with more than 600 professional team members who provide the company with engineering, physics, legal, human resources, media relations, logistics, and construction talent to fuel a company that is uniquely collaborative and talent-laden.
Credits Bangalore Mirror