There's currently a major transport race going on, really, really quickly.
Back in 2013, Elon Musk (the real-life Iron Man tech whiz who keeps cropping up at the moment) revealed his idea for a new form of transport: the Hyperloop. Described as "a cross between a Concorde and a railgun and an air hockey table", his initial proposal outlined a passenger-carrying pod that could travel through a tube at speeds of around 750mph.
Which is where Hyperloop One come in. Formerly named 'Hyperloop Technologies', the LA-based tech group has just announced it's raised $80 million in a recent funding round, along with a bundle of new international partners to help build the futuristic new vacuum train.
They're set to start testing the propulsion unit of their design in North Las Vegas, with a "full system, full scale test" due later this year.
"It's real, it's happening now, and we're going to demonstrate how this company is making it happen," said Hyperloop CEO Rob Lloyd at a press conference, in which he also announced a competition to 'identify and select locations around the world with the potential to develop and construct the world’s first hyperloop networks'.
Entrants don't have to advance the tech or provide any engineering credentials, just convince Hyperloop One that the transport system could be put to good use in your area.
Hyperloop One currently has competition in the form of Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, a group currently funded by a crowdsourced project. While Musk originally proposed building the first track to take passengers between San Francisco and Los Angeles (covering 354 miles in 35 minutes), Hyperloop Transportation Technologies has agreed with the Slovakian government to build a hyperloop connecting Slovenia with Austria and Hungary.
Yes, you'll be stuck with overcrowded trains and gridlocked roads for the near future, but believe the hype - Hyperloop is coming.
[Via: Hyperloop One]