Thursday, July 2, 2015

Problems with the Hyperloop

We continue our input on mass transit in Californian and the alternative to the currently approved High Speed Rail, which is only partially funded. Like issues with the Cal High Speed Rail and we are sure there were issues with the US highway system that was introduced in the 50’s. There are a few major issues that would have to be addresses with the Hyperloop. The Hyperloop will as all mass transit has land rights issues. Getting right of ways locally and regionally. That is an avenue that can be addressed if the system is more than a science project. There will certainly be environmental issues as any development has to address. Two big issues though may make it an unsound idea. If it proves to be sound as a prototype then practical issues would need to be overcome. The Cato Institute says a big one is how much energy the Hyperloop would require. The linear propulsion system and the air pressure pumps for the tubes would probably need much more energy than would be provided by the solar panels Musk proposes installing on the tubes and the energy recovery system he envisions having at the end of the route, said Roger Goodall, a maglev train expert and a professor of control systems engineering at the United Kingdom's Loughborough University. Another big issue is that the Hyperloop would have to go straight. If this vacuum tube runs at 800 miles per hour or more, then scientists say a human could not take a bend at that speed without deposited their lunch or breakfast on the seats or other passengers. The force of moving a human body at such speeds a few feet left or right or up and down over a hill maybe too much for a passenger. It is likely unrealistic to think you can have a straight shot from San Francisco to Los Angeles. There would have to be bends in the plan. If this can be overcome then maybe there is hope for a $20 one way ride, not including your car. But is there enough energy to do it with just solar? And will the development costs far exceed the construction costs. Things to consider.

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