According to a recent tweet by Elon Musk himself, the infamous LA Hyperloop tunnels will be open to test riders on December 10th of this year. After nearly seven years of planning and brainstorming, Musk’s vision of a “fifth mode of transport” is finally becoming a reality, and LA commuters are surely intrigued.
We’ve all heard of the term before, but with an idea this futuristic, it can be hard to fathom exactly what it is. Hyperloop currently consists of 2 underground tunnels that extend from Los Angeles to San Francisco. Inside these tunnels are pods designed to move passengers and cargo at speeds up to 700 miles per hour. The speed accelerates gradually by using magnetic levitation in a low-pressure tube, and the system will be entirely autonomous.
Will connecting San Francisco and Los Angeles with hyper-speed transit cause even higher rates of growth in California, the world's 5th largest economy?
The Hyperloop system is not to be confused with high-speed trains however, in that Hyperloop travel will be on-demand, environmentally friendly, and 2-3 times faster than commuter trains. Also, several pods will be able to depart per minute, making this a feasible solution to the commuter congestion of major cities across the world.
More than a Commuter Solution
The possibilities of various Hyperloops across the planet don’t end at commuter pods. With crazy fast speeds and sufficient space, Hyperloop tunnels can completely change the way we transport goods. Pods are being developed to hold entire cargo cases, which could then be propelled from Point A to Point B faster than any other mode of transportation that has ever existed.
With our current food production capable of feeding 10 billion people, Hyperloop will make food logistics more efficient and prevent food from spoiling in transit.
It’s taken years of planning and applying for permits, but the project is finally nearing completion in Los Angeles. Once the implementation goes smoothly, Hyperloop plans to move onto the next major city, Chicago, to start building once again.
Musk’s tweet on October 21st hinted to the grand opening of LA’s Hyperloop on December 10th, but many people are skeptical. After all, Tesla’s Model X was promised to be released in 2013, but was actually released two years after that. So will LA commuters actually be able to test run the Hyperloop next month? Only time will tell, but fingers crossed. It’s going to be a huge game changer.