SpaceX Plans 5th Hyperloop Competition

In 2020, SpaceX plans to host its fifth Hyperloop competition at a brand-new vacuum tunnel that could offer all kinds of new opportunities to next year’s student teams

According to Musk, that new track – presumably to be built by The Boring Company with SpaceX help – could be up to 10 km (6.2 mi) in length, will support a full vacuum like its 1.6 km (1 mi) predecessor, and will feature a curved track. Altogether, those features could support truly insane top speeds and allow teams to test pods with far more realistic acceleration profiles relative to those that have been tested at SpaceX’s track in the last few years. Furthermore, Musk specifically described the new track as a “10km vacuum tunnel”, immediately bringing to mind the obvious possibility of a new Boring Company collaboration.

SpaceX just wrapped up its fourth Hyperloop competition in two years. Of the 21 teams that won slots in the event, only four were judged by SpaceX to be ready for speed runs. Of those four, the German team TUM Hyperloop (formerly WARR Hyperloop) reached a top speed of 288 mph (463 km/h, 128 m/s) before the pod suffered visible damage and performed a flawless emergency stop, pulling dozens of Gs and coming to a halt in just 50-100m.

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