indica News Bureau
The government of the western Indian state of Maharashtra has named the Virgin Hyperloop One-DP World (VHO-DPW) consortium as the Original Project Proponent (OPP) for the Mumbai-Pune hyperloop project, IANS has reported.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk first proposed the idea of a hyperloop architecture in 2013. Since then, there has been much interest in this mode of transportation that promises to run at over 1,000 kph, almost three times as fast as high-speed rail.
Now, Maharashtra has announced a plan to create the world’s first hyperloop transportation system, promising to link central Pune with Mumbai in under 35 minutes. Currently, travelers take more than 3 hours to cover this distance, whether they use the expressway or the railway.
In a hyperloop system, passengers or cargo are loaded on to the hyperloop vehicle that accelerates gradually via electric propulsion through a low-pressure tube, according to Virgin Hyperloop One, which is headquartered in Los Angeles, California.
The vehicles are propelled using a linear electric motor, which is a straightened-out version of a conventional rotary motor.
A conventional electric motor has two primary parts, a stator (the part that stays still) and a rotor (the part that rotates).
When voltage is applied to the stator it makes the rotor spin and do the work of, say, spinning a power drill.
A linear electric motor has the same two main parts. Only, the rotor does not rotate; it moves in a straight line along the length of the stator.
In the hyperloop, the stators are mounted to the tube, the rotor is mounted to the pod, and the pod straddles the stators as it accelerates down the tube.
The vehicle floats above the track using magnetic levitation and glides at the speed of an aircraft owing to ultra-low aerodynamic drag.
The fully autonomous hyperloop system will be built on columns or tunneled below ground to avoid dangerous grade crossings and wildlife, the company said.
Besides offering a faster mode of transportation, there are some other benefits of a hyperloop. The impact of the system is believed to be less severe on the environment with no direct emissions or noise. Virgin Hyperloop One has built a full-scale hyperloop test track and completed hundreds of test runs.