Texas a Leader in Hyperloop Testing

A route in Texas is a finalist for the first live test of the 'Hyperloop,' a futuristic transportation system pioneered and financed by Virgin Atlantic founder Sir Richard Branson, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

The Hyperloop is a giant tube where the train cars float through using magnetic levitation. Mag-Lev technology has been in use for decades in 'bullet trains in Japan and Europe, but the key to the Hyperloop is the fact that the closed loop leaves the train free from gravitational drug, allowing it to travel much faster. In fact, Virgin says a Hyperloop could get passengers or cargo from San Antonio to Dallas in 25 minutes.

Michael Morris is leading Texas' bid to be the host of the Hyperloop test shot, and he says we're the perfect spot.

"My hope is that we build a certification track, and we advance Hyperloop technology here in the state," he said.

He says unlike test transportation tracks which are later abandoned, a Texas track could simply be folded into a working Hyperloop system.

"In San Antonio you would walk up to the station and say, 'I'm interesting in going to Ft., Worth," he said. "You would just walk on, it would be like an elevator."

the long term plan includes a Hyperloop link between DFW, Austin, San Antonio and Mexico. Supporters say a key advantage to Hyperloop technology is that unlike existing rail lines, the tubed Hyperloop is built several feet above the ground, so farming and current city activities could continue, without the battles over tearing up streets and eminent domain, which have scuttled ambitious rail projects since the 1980's.

Morris says Texas is the place to test Hyperloop because of the state's growth in transportation technology.

"Trucks are traveling in Texas today that don't have a driver," he said. "We are working on unmanned helicopters."

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