Hyperloop Makes Successful Open-Air Test, Breaks the Speed of Yawn

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
hyperloop makes successful open air test breaks the speed of yawn

No one wants their most exciting moment to last two seconds, so let’s hope the folks at Hyperloop One have bigger things coming down the, erm, pipe.

Yesterday, amid great fanfare and hype, the recently renamed Hyperloop One (formerly Hyperloop Technologies) performed the first open-air test of the electromagnetic propulsion system at the heart of the futuristic transportation concept.

As a bandstand of employees and media watched beneath the hot Nevada sun, a test vehicle rocketed along a track for two seconds, hitting Camry-on-a-joyride speeds — officially, 116 miles per hour — before plowing into a sand trap. The future doesn’t have brakes yet, just sand.

Underwhelmed by the spectacle? Hyperloop One would probably counter that by saying you aren’t using your imagination.

The Guardian newspaper was being imaginative when it described the test as reaching “the technological heights of a 1996-era rollercoaster.”

Company co-founder and chief technology officer Brogan BamBrogan, whose name and moustache are anything but boring, called the test one of Hyperloop’s “bigger, more tangible” milestones.

In Hyperloop land, the test was a major step towards missile-shaped pods filled with people rushing on a cushion of air through low-pressure tubes at the speed of sound. The concept, conceived in the madcap brain of Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk, was gifted to the world by the man in the sleeping bag.

Musk delivered kudos over Twitter following the demonstration, which could have upped the “wow” factor by having the test vehicle disappear without a trace at the end of the track.

Two teams are seriously pursuing the wheelless future of land transport — Hyperloop One and Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, both headquartered in the southwestern United States. Musk isn’t working with either team, but follows the work on his concept closely.

BamBrogan showed up in Detroit last month with the intent of drawing engineers away from the auto industry. There’s a hiring binge underway at Hyperloop One, and BamBrogan wants the best and brightest on board his tube to the future.

Yesterday’s test might have thrilled engineers and employees of his company, but BamBrogan’s only hope of quelling the snark and cynicism surrounding Hyperloop is to perform longer, faster and more complete tests, find more financial backers (they already have several), and prove the technical and financial feasibility of the technology to the naysaying public.

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  • 70Cougar 70Cougar on May 13, 2016

    I can't believe people waste time trying to invent things. What will they try next, a computer that fits in your pocket and connects to a global information network?

    • 05lgt 05lgt on May 13, 2016

      Nope, that's the old new. The new new is a vest that monitors twitter feeds and communicates to the candidate via patterned vibrations so he truly tell the people what they want to hear. Sadly, it ends up working a lot like the Microsoft twitter AI...

  • Maseraudi Maseraudi on May 13, 2016

    I kinda of thought the whole hyperyloop hype was a new money sucking scheme but then I read that the french railway system was investing in it. Now I am sure it is...

  • Tassos The EQS is the best looking BEV, better than even the only Tesla I would ever consider (the S) and more luxurious inside etc etcThe self driving features will come in handy when I'm 110 and my eyesight and reaction times start to suffer.But that's four decades away, and only Tim recommends 40 year old "used cars"
  • Tassos "Baby, Baby light my fire!""Oh God please give me a Kia Forte" --Janis Joplin
  • Tassos The fugly looks of any Subaru, and especially the non-sporty non-elegant, fugly, low-rent looks and interior of the WRX are alone a sufficient turnoff to never want to own one.One can be a 100% car enthusiast but ALSO demand a beautiful AND luxurious vehicle one can be truly proud of and which makes one very happy every time one drives it.The above is obviously totally foreign to Subaru Designers and managers.
  • Thehyundaigarage Am I the only one that sees a Peugeot 508?
  • Lou_BC I realized it wasn't EV's burning by the absence of the usual suspects.