Innovation

Want to travel 400 miles in 50 minutes without setting foot on a plane? Hyperloop One unveils its new highways

Nine potential routes, connecting 75 million people in 44 cities and spanning 5,000km, were made public at Hyperloop One's Vision for Europe Summit yesterday.

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Image: Hyperloop One

Hyperloop One wants to shuttle Europeans between major cities in electromagnetically propelled pods travelling at up to 750mph.

Nine potential European routes, connecting 75 million people in 44 cities and spanning 5,000km, were made public at Hyperloop One's Vision for Europe Summit yesterday.

Hyperloop One is developing a transport system that would see an electromagnetic-powered sled accelerated through a vacuum-sealed steel tunnel at speeds of up to 750mph. In the company's first open-air test of the technology last year, a pod was propelled to more than 100mph over a short track.

The proposed European routes are:

  • Corsica-Sardinia - 451 km
  • Estonia-Finland - 90 km
  • Germany - 1,991 km / 142 minutes
  • Poland - 415 km
  • Spain-Morocco - 629 km / 47 minutes
  • The Netherlands - 428 km / 41 minutes
  • UK-North-South Connector - 666 km / 50 minutes
  • UK-Northern Arc - 545 km / 47 minutes
  • UK- Scotland-Wales - 1,060 km

The nine European routes made it through to the the semi-final round of the Hyperloop One Global Challenge, a competition which invites teams worldwide to put forward a commercial, transport, economic, and policy case for cities, regions, or countries to be considered to host the first hyperloop networks.

SEE: Hyperloop highway? You could travel from US to India in 3 hours for $50

"Europe embraces new ideas in transportation like no other region in the world and is uniquely positioned to take the next great leap in transportation with Hyperloop One," said Shervin Pishevar, co-founder and executive chairman of Hyperloop One at the summit.

"Our vision is to, one day, connect all of Europe with our Hyperloop One system, networking the entire continent."

During the summit in Amsterdam, Hyperloop One executives met with European dignitaries and policymakers to discuss how the transport system could help open up new commuter links and provide a greener alternative for the transport of goods. Hyperloop One claims the transport system would be more energy efficient per passenger mile than other traditional modes of transport, and would curb emissions and fuel consumption.

Hyperloop technology hit the spotlight after Tesla and Space X boss Elon Musk outlined its potential in a 2013 proposal for a transport system to deliver passengers from Los Angeles to San Francisco in 35 minutes. Last year a competing hyperloop transport company told TechRepublic the technology could allow someone to travel from the US to India in 3 hours for $50. However, while the possibilities of hyperloop transport have created a lot of buzz, some have pointed out it is likely years from becoming a commercial reality.

Read more on hyperloop transport

About Nick Heath

Nick Heath is chief reporter for TechRepublic. He writes about the technology that IT decision makers need to know about, and the latest happenings in the European tech scene.

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