It's a small world after all—at least, it would be if Elon Musk had his way. In August 2013, the Tesla and SpaceX founder and our generation's outside-the-box entrepeneur publicly released Hyperloop blueprints for use by any interested parties. Fast forward three years, and Hyperloop One– a Los Angeles-based company– is thinking about bringing electric propulsion travel to Australia for testing.
"There's a clear long-term need for ultra-fast transport on the Australian east coast," the company's Vice President Alan James told the Australian. "Melbourne to Sydney is the third busiest air corridor in the world and we can give you Melbourne downtown to Sydney downtown in 55 minutes."
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Currently, air travel between the two cities rings in at approximately 90 minutes—and that doesn't include transportation time to and from airports, security, check-in, and standing impatiently at baggage claim. Hyperloop technology will allow passengers and cargo to travel by electric propulsion "through a tube in a low-pressure environment," according to the company website.
"The autonomous vehicle levitates slightly above the track and glides at faster-than-airline speeds over long distances. We eliminate direct emissions, noise, delay, weather concerns, and pilot error."
Australia won't be the first test zone for Hyperloop One, which will build a fully operational model (at full scale) in the Nevada desert early next year. "This is not a '10 years away story,' this is not a 'five years away story,' and literally months from now the world will be able to touch, smell, and see an operational Hyperloop," says James.