The Race to Build the Hyperloop Is Heating Up With New Test Track
Another Hyperloop test track is popping up in California.
Just weeks after Hyperloop Technologies released images heralding the arrival of a series of white tubes to a strip of the Nevada desert, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies — a different company — announced the creation of its own 5-mile test track in an area south of Fresno, California, according to the Verge.
The test track will be nestled into a forthcoming utopian mecca called Quay Valley. The sustainably powered town "featuring waterways, open space, organic farms, tree-lined lanes with walkways and expansive parks surrounding homes," is a project of Grow Holdings. Hyperloop Transportation Technologies CEO Dirk Ahlborn said the drivers heading down Interstate 5 will be able to see the Hyperloop being built, according to the Verge.
A Hyperloop is a method of travel by which a levitating pod is pushed through a tube at speeds surpassing 700 miles per hour. SpaceX founder Elon Musk popularized the concept in 2013, when he released an open source design for such a system.
Though Hyperloop Transportation Technologies and Hyperloop Technologies have been the most vocal about their development of high-speed railless travel, there are still others vying to create Hyperloop transit. This month, SpaceX will review the initial designs for its Hyperloop pod contest, which is being done in collaboration with Hyperloop Technologies. A select few will be chosen to build and test their designs in a formal competition this summer. The winner will have an opportunity to work with SpaceX and get $50,000 in funding.
While the pod competition plugs away, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies' cohort of volunteers will be busy erecting and testing its short track. The company, which crowdsources development, is hoping to have its technology operational by 2019.