A preview of this promising technology, but it will still be in demand for at least a few years.
In 2012, Elon Musk launched the Hyperloop concept, a high-speed train project that travels in a low-pressure environment. Since then, the idea has gained traction and many companies have entered into this infringement. We recently told you about HyperloopTT, which is one of the big names working on this technology. Today, Virgin, the group founded by Richard Branson, released a new video demo where they explained in more detail their prototype design; Before sending them into orbit, the billionaire plans to fling his customers at full speed into an empty tube.
The narration begins by recalling the concept of a train vactrain. In the automotive world or the aviation world, a car adapts to its environment to reduce friction with the air, thanks to the science of aerodynamics. The higher the profile of the car is improved, the higher its ability to cut through the air at high speed; It also saves less energy in combating the environment, which inevitably slows down the machine.
However, in a vactrain Like the Hyperloop, this philosophy goes both ways: We also adapt the environment to the car by creating a virtual vacuum in the tube where it will rotate. This almost completely eliminates friction with air. The train can thus reach much higher speeds, at a lower energy cost on paper.
a maglev inverted
When it comes to propulsion, Virgin has taken the same approach as many Hyperloop designers: technology maglev, where magnetic levitation train. This is an effort to further reduce the forces exerted on the vehicle. Indeed, a train maglev It has no wheels, and the point of contact with the support completely disappears. Instead of recycling the kinetic energy produced by the motor and losing a large part of it, a maglev It relies on force-beaten electromagnets, which direct and drive them. So it could float close to its runway without any resistance; This is why these trains are Faster in the world today.
However, Virgin has developed its own interpretation of this technology. Instead of resting on top of a magnet, the Virgin Hyperloop will dangle below. Technically, we can no longer talk about the maglev; But what is the importance of Virgin, which claims efficiency?10 times stronger than the current magnetic trains“.enough to reach 1078 kilometers per hour if we are to believe the figures in the show.
As always in these introductory videos, the concept looks as revolutionary as it is stylish and functional; But if full of beautiful promises, this passage provides very little concrete information about the tangible aspect. To see if Virgin will succeed in achieving its ambitious goals, it will be necessary to wait until 2027, the network’s planned commissioning date.
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