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Virgin Hyperloop’s Ultra high-speed Pods are a Utopian Vision of Tomorrow

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Above: Photo / Virgin Hyperloop

Ongoing attempts to enable travel between cities within a matter of minutes take form and shape…

A new concept video of the company’s plans for its Hyperloop system has been released, and if realized, the system will be a very fast one. The trains would travel inside a near-vacuum environment within a tube. The absence of air allows for the luxury train-like pods to travel at low power yet at extremely fast speeds, reaching up to 1,080km/hour or 670 mph.

The concept of a Hyperloop system is not a new one, and actually it was Elon Musk that initially brought the idea of developing a hyperloop transportation concept into the mainstream via the Boring Company.

photo / Virgin Hyperloop

Plans to build fully realized systems did not materialize under his watch, perhaps due to his very full agenda with sustainable energy, EVs, the moon and mars all on his plate, and now Virgin appears to be picking up the mantel and aiming for a complete transport system. With jet speeds, comfort of luxury train travel and the flexibility of car individuality the concept projections are, at the very least, beautifully imagined.

While the slick, enjoyable video (below) might make you eager to jump into a pod pronto, the reality, if realized, of the system in some kind of full commercial operations, is projected for 2027 and beyond.

All of this is promised, along with nearly zero emissions. Looking forward using a 30 year time horizon the company’s studies estimated that there could be a reduction CO2 emissions by 2.4 million tons with a connection built between three cities creating $300 billion in overall economic benefits.

This somewhat utopian vision would enable incredibly smooth, clean, cheap transportation between cities and be fast. Really fast. Although it may be easy to scoff at this rosy view of the future – it is exactly the kind of bold utopian vision that will be required if humanity is going to be saved from oblivion. Climate crisis disasters, financial meltdowns, political gridlock and corruption, these are the obvious likely candidates for a believable future.

On the other hand, ideas like universal basic income (paid in bitcoin mined by cell phone), emission free ultra luxurious hi-speed transport systems, powered with renewable energy, a world where scarcity and want are not the measurement of reality, these are the necessities of utopia.

Perhaps it’s time to start thinking it could be possible. Since the alternative is oblivion and extinction, why not?

“It starts off with two people riding a Hyperloop. It ends with hundreds of millions of people riding on a Hyperloop and that’s what the 2020s, the roaring ’20s will be”

Virgin Hyperloop Co-founder and Chief Executive Josh Giegel

One difference between the Virgin Hyperloop and a high-speed maglev train system, for example, is the idea of an individual pod system which would allow for individual pods to break away and head to secondary tubes leading towards a different destination.

Virgin Hyperloop is part of the Virgin empire created by Richard Branson, below he shared the video explaining how travel pods work.


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