© Fujifilm X-T10
© Fujifilm X-T10

Researchers to create ‘train of the future’

A team of more than 30 students from the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV), Spain, is planning the first prototype of the ‘Hyperloop UPV’ – a train capable of travelling at 1,000km per hour, so that vegetables grown in the greenhouses of Almeria could reach Berlin within two and a half hours.

The project is based on a system of large vacuum tubes, through which capsules circulate in a similar way to those used in supermarkets to propel cash-loaded containers, but with the capacity to transport passengers and goods, such as vegetables.

The initial team, made up of five students from the UPV, was selected from more than 300 universities around the world to participate in the Design Weekend, organised by SpaceX at the University of Texas, US, which allowed them to present their Hyperloop concept. In that stage of the competition, in which projects from 160 universities were presented, the Spanish team was awarded two prizes: the best design and the best propulsion subsystem.

The UPV team wants to lead the Hyperloop project in Europe.

In order for this transport revolution to become a reality and Europe to be at the forefront of its development, the team has said it hopes to receive aid under the Horizon 2020 programme for projects that drive Europe’s economy and sustainable technology.

This new train will aim to facilitate the economic development of the EU, boosting intermodal transport and industrial growth with a highly efficient system, as an alternative to air and road logistics.

The train will be tested this summer at a circuit in California, US.