What is Hyperloop?


Irrespective of where you live or what you do, transportation – the movement of humans, animals and goods – has served as a basic necessity in enabling humans to live their life. Gone are the days of horse-drawn carriage that moved at a max of 10 kph to cars that go 0-60 kph in seconds; a testament to the innovation of people. However, the last new form of transportation, the airplane, was invented 115 years ago.

This poses the question:

What’s next for the future of transportation?

Good news, you’ve come to the right place, Queens Hyperloop Design Team (QHDT) is a group of 80+ students with one goal in mind: to join the revolution of transportation and build a prototypical Hyperloop pod.

Why should I care?

Hyperloop technologies is the mode of transportation facilitated through vacuum-sealed tubes that works to reduce friction and increase efficiency. As the pod accelerates, floating in the near-airless tube, the pod will coast long distances without losing momentum. Think similarly to a bike moving downhill; except at speeds up to 1200 km/hour. In theory, hyperloop is inherently safer than other forms of transportation. The pod sits inside a sealed tube and uses a computer pilot to remove potential user error. It will run on electricity and can be integrated with the power grid and other forms of renewable energy like solar or wind. 

With the capabilities of frictionless technology here are examples of real-world benefits:

  • One can work in a major city and still live 800 km away

  • Fresh, organic produce could travel from farm or docks to table and maintain the highest quality

  • Transport of Amazon packages could be delivered from warehouse to home even faster

  • Increased transit speeds will lead to a higher adoption of communal transport and a decreased reliance on cars 

Humans are always seeking the next big thing, and Hyperloop’s potential to revolutionize transportation is world changing.

How does Hyperloop work?

The Hyperloop works with humans or goods entering a large tube (think subway tracks) to board a pod (subway car) that would potentially fit 15-30 people. The tubes can be built on elevated pylons underground, through the ocean or at ground-level. What differentiates the Hyperloop from a subway is that the air from the tube is sucked out to simulate the environment of a vacuum; resulting in lower pressure and friction. Similar air resistance techniques are used by airline pilots who soar at 30,000 feet as it allows them to conserve fuel by operating in a vacuum. Furthermore, instead of moving on wheels like a train, the Hyperloop will levitate magnetically, avoiding resistance.

This hypothetical high-speed mode of transportation would have the following characteristics:

  • immunity to weather

  • collision free

  • twice the speed of a plane

  • low power consumption

  • energy storage for 24-hour operations.

As outlined above, there are several distinct advantages to the hyperloop as opposed to conventional forms of transportation. Follow @queenshyperloop on instagram for more information on the development of hyperloop technologies and how our team is contributing to this growth.

Tyson Lin