Today, Hyperloop One claimed its demo pod reached 192 mph (310 km/h) on the 500 m (1/3 mile) test track the startup built outside of Las Vegas. Hyperloop One showed off that demo pod last month — it’s actually an 8.7 m (28.5 ft) carbon fiber shell on a magnetically levitating chassis.
This test run follows a “Phase 1” test where a bare sled was sent around the test track at 110 km/h. At the time, Hyperloop One had said that Phase 2 would involve a speed of 250 mph, but in a recent press release, the startup said its 192 mph test this month met Phase 2 development goals. Ars has reached out to Hyperloop One for clarification and we will update when we get a response.
Although no media was present, Hyperloop One claims that in this most recent test, its large pod “accelerated 1,000 feet and glided above the track using magnetic levitation before braking and gradually coming to a stop.”
The Hyperloop idea in its current form was popularized by Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. Musk opted not to continue building the train, which he said traveled at 760 mph in a low-pressure tube on air bearings, but these days SpaceX runs competitions for engineering students and has encouraged startups like Hyperloop One to get involved with the idea as well. run .
In this latest test, Hyperloop One said it depressurized its 10-foot-wide test tube “to the equivalent of air at 200,000 feet above sea level.”
The startup also said the pod accelerated using a “highly efficient electric motor,” but it’s unclear if that was the same kind of linear motor used in the previous test.
Hyperloop One CEO Rob Lloyd said in a statement: “We’ve proven our technology works, and we’re now ready to engage in discussions with partners, customers and governments around the world about the full commercialization of our Hyperloop technology.” The company has received investment from Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority, as well as France’s national rail system SNCF, GE Ventures and Western Technology Investment.
Frame image by Hyperloop One