Do you remember few years ago the idea of developing a tunnel without any air which could transport you at incredible speeds? Elon Musk had grand visions for the test track built by The Boring Company in Los Angeles.
However, few months ago the first demonstration of that track didn’t quite match this vision: it was only a Tesla Model X on a sled going down a very bumpy tunnel at roughly 50 mph.
Indeed, as related by journalists who were invited, it was first a trip aboard a classical Tesla, on a bumpy course, at a maximum speed of 75 km/h. This was far from the vision of capsules suspended on magnets that would travel hundreds of kilometers an hour in vacuum tunnels across the continent…
In May 2019, a video was released by the company, showing an autonomous Tesla managing to reach 200 km/h because the ground had become smooth, just because it had been asphalted…
Inevitably, journalists asked why the original project was stopped, and why this project were directed to a simple tunnel, and Elon Musk just answered “Because it works well”.
The question then arises: What does the future hold for the hyperloop?
Some enterprises have continued to work on the project, such as the Canadian Transpod, who decided so set the experimental tunnel in France, in Limousin more precisely. On the program: an experiment along a tube of 3 kms to scale ½ along an old railway, for a first commercial line at 1000 km/h around 2030.
Although the future is uncertain about this technology, one thing is sure – there will be a lot of research and development in this space in the years to come.
- Photo © The Boring Compagny
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