Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla Motors and SpaceX, released details about his latest plans to revolutionize transportation – the Hyperloop high speed shuttle that would transport travellers between Los Angeles and San Francisco in record time.

Musk has been developing the plans for roughly nine months with a crew of a dozen engineers from both Tesla and SpaceX, reported Forbes. If Hyperloop will really work as Musk claims, it’ll get travellers between the two California metropolises in less than a half an hour – travelling around 761 mph. “It would be great to have an alternative to flying or driving, but obviously only if it is actually better than flying or driving,” Musk wrote about his concept in a blog post. True to his word, the Hyperloop would prove faster than a commercial flight.

(Elon Musk)

The Hyperloop, which will consist of pods that have a look more similar to an airplane than a train, will be propelled by magnets. The pods would essentially hover over thin rails with electromagnets that will pull the pods forward at incredible speeds. It would all be powered by solar panels that would cover the roofs of the steel pod tubes. “The Hyperloop can generate far in excess of the energy needed to operate,” assures Musk in his post.

Compared to the high-seed rail plan that’s been proposed for California, the Hyperloop would be significantly cheaper. While the high-speed rail would cost California’s tax payers roughly $70 billion, Musk’s Hyperloop would cost closer to $6 billion. Furthermore, the Amtrak-like service would not be a faster mode of travel than flight.

(Elon Musk)

When Musk released his plans for the Hyperloop on Monday, he initially stated that he would be too busy to push them further, which was why he was handing them over to the public domain. “Maybe I would just do the beginning bit, create a subscale version that is operating and then hand it over to someone else,” Musk offered, while speaking to reporters later in the day. “Ironing out the details at a subscale level is a tricky thing. I think I would probably end up doing that."

Fellow engineer Daryl Oster is amazed by the concept Musk came up with. "At first I thought, yeah, this is the craziest thing I’ve ever heard of,” Oster, the CEO of California company ET3, told Fox Business. “It’s literally space travel on Earth."

– Chelsea Regan

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