Hyperloop Transportation Technologies
|Headquarters||Playa Vista, California, U.S.|
Number of employees
Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, also known as HyperloopTT, is an American research company formed using a crowd collaboration approach (a mix of team collaboration and crowdsourcing) to develop a transportation system based on the Hyperloop concept, which was envisioned by Elon Musk in 2013.
The concept of the Hyperloop was popularized by Elon Musk, not affiliated with HTT. The project was to develop a high speed, intercity transporter using a low pressure tube train which would reach a top speed of 800 miles per hour (1,300 km/h) with a yearly capacity of 15 million passengers.
HTT also plans to build slower, privatized urban Hyperloops for inter-suburb travel.
The company was founded by JumpStarter, Inc., utilizing the company's crowdfunding and collaboration platform JumpStartFund. The company has assembled a team of community members, attracting high level engineers and contributing corporations including Ansys for computer simulation resources and GloCal Network Corporation and UCLA Architecture & Urban Design for developing the social interface for the Hyperloop project. A December 2014 article in Wired revealed that the initial development work was done by approximately 100 engineers located mostly in the United States. The contributors were working in exchange for stock options, and were selected from a group of about 200 who initially applied. In 2013, HTT partnered with the engineering software developer Ansys, which ran simulation models for the fluid dynamics of the Hyperloop.
The company was not focused on the Los Angeles-to-San Francisco route that was the baseline of the Hyperloop Alpha design from 2013, and considered other routes. As of 2014[update], the company was projecting the completion of a technical feasibility study in 2015, but also said that they were at least ten years away from a commercially operating Hyperloop.
In 2014, HTT teamed up with UCLA's Suprastudio master's in architecture program, which designed the [putative] “human factor” of the HTT user experience, from pods to station architecture to boarding and ticketing.
By February 2015, the company had grown to nearly 200 people, and had announced that it would hold an initial public offering that year to raise US$100 million. HTT also entered a formal agreement with GROW Holdings, the developer of Quay Valley, California, to construct a 5-mile (8 km) demonstration track beginning in 2016. By November, HTT had grown to just under 500 people. In August 2015, engineering design and construction firm AECOM began providing engineering services to HTT for the design of the full-scale Quay Valley prototype track. Also in August 2015, HTT announced partnerships with international engineering giant Aecom and Oerlikon, the world's oldest vacuum technology [specialist]."
In 2016 the CEO, Dirk Ahlborn, announced an agreement with the Slovak government to perform feasibility studies regarding routes connecting Vienna, Austria to Bratislava, Slovakia, and Bratislava to Budapest, Hungary. Total costs for this project are estimated to be US$200–300 million. The resulting annual system capacity is projected to be 10 million passengers. HTT announced in March 2016 that they would be using passive Inductrack systems for their titular Hyperloop. In August 2018, however, the agreement expired.
In September 2017, HTT signed an agreement with the Andhra Pradesh State Government in India to build a Hyperloop between the cities of Amaravati and Vijaywada. The two-phase project would begin with a 6-month feasibility study which would be followed by actual construction.
In 2016, HTT had raised $108 million ($31.8 million in cash, $77 million in man hours, services rendered, land rights usage and future in-kind investments).
In January 2017, HTT announced that it would be opening a new facility in Toulouse, France. The 32,000 sq ft (3,000 m2) facility is to be used to host its research. In April 2018, HTT announced that it would begin building the first of two test tracks at its facility there. The company said that the first shipment of tubes has arrived at its R&D site in Toulouse. The first track, which was about to enter construction, is a ground-level setup running around 320 meters in length. It was thought that the smaller track would be ready for testing at some point that year.
In July 2018, HTT announced an agreement to create a joint venture with the government of China's southwestern province of Guizhou to construct a 10km long Hyperloop track in the city of Tongren.
On February 15, 2018, HTT signed an agreement with both the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) metropolitan planning organization and the Illinois Department of Transportation to begin work on a feasibility study concerning a possible Hyperloop route between Cleveland and Chicago. The study will consider the viability of the project and will focus on determining the ideal corridor for transit. In 2019, $5 million in funding was approved for the Great Lakes Hyperloop as part of a bill approved by the U.S. House of Representatives. The feasibility study was released December 16, 2019.
In 2016, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies developed a real-world smart composite material named Vibranium. The lightweight carbon fiber material for the Hyperloop pods is reported to provide the passengers double protection against damage to the exterior. The company says that its Vibranium is eight times lighter than aluminum and 10 times stronger than steel alternatives. The material has "embedded sensors that can transmit critical information regarding temperature, stability, integrity and more, wirelessly and instantly."
HTT is aggressive in making forward-looking statements, such as:
- Feasibility study with UCLA by mid-2015
- Initial Public Offering in 2015
- Demonstration Track in 2016
- New facility in Toulouse, France Jan 2017
.hyperlooptt .com /about
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