Students geared up for Hyperloop final
A team of Edinburgh students is competing in the final of one of the world’s most prestigious engineering competitions.
The students have travelled to the US to take part in a contest to design a revolutionary new form of transportation – known as the Hyperloop.
Hyperloop is the brainchild of billionaire entrepreneur and inventor Elon Musk.
It is intended to transport passengers over land in pods travelling at around 750mph in a near-vacuum tube.
Edinburgh’s HypED team is the only group from the UK – and one of just four European teams – to reach the final of the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition II.
They are competing against 24 other teams at the event, which takes place from 25-27 August at SpaceX’s headquarters in California, US.
The team has designed and built a prototype travel pod. It will be put through its paces on the aerospace company’s mile-long Hyperloop testing track.
HypED is made up of 50 students from disciplines including engineering, business, art and law.
The team has received support from University staff, including Professors Win Rampen and Gordon Masterton of the School of Engineering.
HypED earned its final place having performed well in earlier phases of the competition, which was launched in 2015.
Some 1,200 teams from around the world submitted preliminary Hyperloop designs to the contest. HypED was one of only 120 groups invited to a Design Weekend in Texas in January 2016.
At the event, the team was presented with a Subsystem Technical Excellence Award for their designs – one of only 13 prizes awarded.
Earlier this year, HypED reached the semi-final of a related business competition called the Hyperloop One Global Challenge.
Teams were asked to develop detailed plans for the most feasible routes to implement one of the world’s first Hyperloop systems.
At the semi-finals in Amsterdam, HypED proposed a route between Edinburgh and London. Building a Hyperloop route between the two cities could allow journey times of just 35 minutes. The outcome of the semi-finals is expected to be announced in September 2017.