The idea has a deep history and it dates back centuries but it could not become successful for various reasons such as lack of resources and research on this technology. Elon Musk was the first person for revealing this idea and he stated that he was thinking of the fifth mode of transportation named as Hyperloop in July 2012. He mentioned this idea at the PandoDaily event in Santa Monica, California. He suggested that his proposed model would have various characteristics such as weather immunity, resistance from a collision, low power consumption, high speed (twice the speed of planes), and it could store energy for performing its various operations for minimum of 24 hours. He named it as Hyperloop because the capsule vehicle would move in a loop (Dr. Josef Doppelbauer, 2020).
In the same manner, Musk states that this mode of transportation would move near the speed of sound. Moreover, Must link Hyperloop with a contrast between a railgun, an air hockey table, and a Concorde in 2013. The role of MIT Hyperloop is the most significant in its history. It presented the most suitable Hyperloop model that would use electrodynamic suspension for elevating the Hyperloop capsule and current edgy braking system. The model was moved to the MIT museum on 13 May 2016.
Phase one of the Hyperloop competition took place on January 29, 2017. MIT Hyperloop team presented the first-ever low-pressure Hyperloop model in the world. However, the Hyperloop team from Delft University Netherland won the first prize of the fastest Hyperloop design in this competition. Likewise, team WARR from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) won the award of the fastest pod in this competition. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) came third in this competition according to the judgment of SpaceX engineers.
What is Hyperloop?
Hyperloop is an innovative and advanced mode of transportation that moves people and freight from one place to another quickly and safely. It moves people and freight from their origin to destination on demand or it can move them directly from their origin to their destination. Hyperloop has a low-pressure tube and its transports people and luggage from one place to another once they load in a Hyperloop vehicle. The primary advantage of this vehicle is that it accelerates slowly but smoothly to keep people and freight safe. The essence of the concept behind Hyperloop technology is a high-speed transportation system for moving people and freight through special pods. The technology uses a low-pressure tube in this context in which highly accelerated pods move from one place to another (Jia, 2019).
The primary aim of Hyperloop is to increase speed of transportation near to the speed of sound. Hyperloop came into existence by the joint venture of Tesla and SpaceX. Hyperloop offers pods that are free from friction and air resistance. These pods increase the speed of vessel moving in these tubes near to the speed of sound and it makes it possible for the Hyperloop vehicle to reach its destination under ideal conditions in which there is not friction offered by the air.
Working of Hyperloop
Hyperloop Alpha was the first concept in this regard published in August 2013 that included a proposal for developing a Hyperloop route running from Los Angeles to San Francisco Bay Area. The calculations suggests that Hyperloop would carry passengers at 350 miles or 560Km at a speed of 1200Km/h or 760 miles using 35 minutes. It is faster than present railway system. Must proposed that this project would cost US$6 billion for making a passenger version. In the same manner, he proposed that it would cost around US$7.5 billion for developing a Hyperloop of larger diameter for moving people and vehicles simultaneously (Nicol, 2018).
However, this technology is under research and various new companies along with student-led teams are working on Hyperloop technology for improving it as SpaceX and Tesla have outsourced this idea.
Advantages of Hyperloop
Hyperloop has various advantages that are making this technology significant and popular. The study highlights some of the most significant and the most prominent advantages of Hyperloop in detail.
Fast and Efficient
The most significant advantage of Hyperloop is that it is faster mode of transportation. Hyperloop is faster than a plane and a railway network. The average speed of Hyperloop is 970 Km/h and the top speed of Hyperloop is 1200Km/h. In the same manner, it is efficient mode of transportation with its output more than other modes of transportation (bbc.com, 2019).
Another significant advantage of Hyperloop is that it is a cheaper mode of transportation compared to the other modes of transportation and the primary reason behind this fact is that Hyperloop uses induction motors along with axial compressors for moving Hyperloop capsule while other modes of transportation use various types of fuels that are expensive.
Use Solar Power
The primary advantage of Hyperloop is that it is sustainable and environment friendly mode of transportation. It uses solar energy that is renewable source of energy for its operations. It means that it does not uses other fuels that are the primary sources of pollution (futureforall.org, 2017).
Protected Hyperloop Tubes
Another significant advantage is that Hyperloop tubes are highly protected from various things or objects such as poor weather conditions, objects, and birds. However, railway tracks and other modes such as roads are not protected from these elements and they can cause various accidents as well.
Lower Human Life Risk
One of the most significant advantage of Hyperloop is that it lowers the risk of human life from accidents and other such events. The primary reason behind this fact is that Hyperloop tubes are highly protected and these tubes are safe from accidents and other such things. Moreover, Hyperloop is fully automated system that reduces chances of accidents and makes it the safest mode of transportation.
Freight Cost and Time Reduction
Another important advantage of Hyperloop is that it reduces time for moving freight from one place to another. It not only saves time but it also reduces cost in movement (rfwireless-world.com, 2020).
Disadvantages of Hyperloop
Hyperloop has various disadvantages as well along with its numerous advantages. The study highlights some of the most significant and the most prominent disadvantages of Hyperloop in this regard.
High Development and Construction Cost
The most prominent disadvantage of Hyperloop is that it has high cost of construction and development as compared to the other modes of transportation.
Vulnerable to Earthquakes, Terror Attacks, and Power Outrage
Hyperloop can face serious challenges such as earthquakes and power outrage. It operates on induction motors and a minor fault in induction motors and axial compressors can make it difficult for Hyperloop to become successful (Dr. Josef Doppelbauer, 2020).
Vibrations and Jostling
Another major issue faced by Hyperloop is vibrations and jostling. The primary reason behind this fact is that high speed of Hyperloop can result into jostling and vibrations and it can cause serious issues like track damage and other such things.
Hyperloop is an unproven technology with various limitation and challenges. The most significant thing in this regard is that the technology is not proven. It is the primary reason that most of the nations are not investing in Hyperloop due to its various limitations and challenges.
Dizziness in Passengers
Another significant disadvantage of Hyperloop is that it causes dizziness in passengers. The major issue in this regard is that the capsule of Hyperloop moves with the speed of sound and passengers can feel dizziness at this high speed.
High Initial Cost
Initial cost of investment for Hyperloop is very high as compared to the other modes of transportation. The primary reason behind this fact is that the cost of basic infrastructure for Hyperloop is very high and most of the nations cannot afford it.
No Solution for Accidents
One of the major limitation of Hyperloop is that this technology has no answer for accidents and malfunction of equipment. The major issue is that there are no service stations and other such garages that can repair Hyperloop parts. Moreover, no accident control system is present for Hyperloop (Muoio, 2016).
Less Movable Space
The capsule size is highly aerodynamic and it has less space for passengers to move. It means that they are not comfortable in this capsule and they can face various issues such as tiredness in long journeys.
Pressurization of Tube
Tube pressurization is another significant issue of Hyperloop. High pressure of tube can result into an un control situation for the capsule and it can result into serious accidents.
Hyperloop in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia has announced to build its first Hyperloop track and the ministry of transportation of Saudi Arabia has signed a contract with Virgin’s Hyperloop One Company in this regard. This Hyperloop would provide 10 times more speed than the speed of the current rail system in the country. Saudi Arabia is going to build its first Hyperloop track from Riyadh to Jeddah and it would cover this distance in 76 minutes (bbc.com, 2019). However, the previous or the current rail system is covering this distance in 10 hours. In the same manner, the Saudi government is planning to develop a Hyperloop track from Jeddah to Madina and Makkah as well after the success of its first Hyperloop system for reducing travel time for the pilgrims of Hajj.
To summarize this business assignment, Hyperloop is the fifth mode of transportation and it is the fastest mode of transportation with an average speed of 960 Km/h and the fastest speed of 1200Km/h. The essence of this technology is to move a Hyperloop vehicle with the speed of sound. Tesla and SpaceX are working at this technology collectively and they have outsourced this project for student led teams and other companies as well. The study highlights the major advantage and disadvantages of this technology in detail. It is evident from the report that the advantages of this technology are more than its disadvantages. In the same manner, the study discusses Hyperloop in Saudi Arabia. The country is going to develop its first track from Jeddah to Riyadh and it has signed a contract with Virgin’s One Company in this regard. It would reduce the travel time between Jeddah to Riyadh to 76 minutes from 10 hours.
The study recommends SpaceX and Tesla to complete the final tests of Hyperloop technology to overcome its major and minor limitations. In the same manner, the study suggests new researchers to investigate the major working principles of Hyperloop, as it is an emerging subject and a latest and an innovative technology.
Future of Hyperloop
Hyperloop has a bright future owing its multiple advantages. Most of the developed nations like the United States, Germany, United Kingdom, and Netherland are working on this technology. Moreover, Tesla and SpaceX have outsourced this technology with a primary aim to improve its defects for its commercialization. Various other nations are showing interest in this technology that is good for its scope.
bbc.com. (2019, July 24). bbc.com. Retrieved from www.bbc.com: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-49096675
Dr. Josef Doppelbauer, V. (2020). Hyperloop – an Innovation for Global Transportation? 11.
futureforall.org. (2017, November 7). futureforall.org. Retrieved from www.futureforall.org: https://www.futureforall.org/2017/november/virgin-hyperloop-one.html
Jia, P. Z. (2019). Consumer Desirability of the Proposed Hyperloop. UC Santa Barbara, 63.
Muoio, D. (2016, September 30). businessinsider.com. Retrieved from www.businessinsider.com: https://www.businessinsider.com/hyperloop-advantages-over-bullet-trains-2015-9
Nicol, W. (2018, December 27). digitaltrends.com. Retrieved from www.digitaltrends.com: https://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/what-is-the-hyperloop/
rfwireless-world.com. (2020). rfwireless-world.com. Retrieved from www.rfwireless-world.com: https://www.rfwireless-world.com/Terminology/Advantages-and-Disadvantages-of-Hyperloop-Technology.html