Entrepreneur Elon Musk unveiled more details about the Hyperloop Monday, a high speed transportation system that could allow passengers to travel between Los Angeles and San Francisco in roughly 30 minutes.
Musk, the chief executive of Tesla Motors and space transport company Space X, published a blog post detailing Hyperloop specifics. Musk described the Hyperloop as a larger version of pneumatic tubes used to transport documents between buildings where two giant fans - one pushing in the back and one sucking in the front - move capsules floating on air inside at over 700 mph.
"The Hyperloop (or something similar) is, in my opinion, the right solution for the specific case of high traffic city pairs that are less than about 1500 km or 900 miles apart," said Musk in the post. Air travel is better suited for those traveling between cities that are further apart.
According to the post, the Hyperloop would be immune to weather and earthquakes. Because the system is designed to accelerate the capsules at speeds that are safe in each section of the system, "very few safety concerns remain."
Musk has criticized California's current High-Speed Rail Program which would cost roughly $68 billion and run passengers between Los Angeles and San Francisco in under three hours at speeds of over 200 mph. However, Space X and Tesla are keeping Musk too busy to lay down concrete plans to build the Hyperloop. The plans he published are open-source, "similar to Linux. Feedback is desired from the community that can help advance the Hyperloop design and bring it from concept to reality."
He told Virgin Group founder and chairman Sir Richard Branson earlier this month during a Google Hangout that the disappointment he felt from the High-Speed Rail was the catalyst for the Hyperloop.
Musk had hinted at the Hyperloop design before. During the D-11 conference in May, he described the Hyperloop as a "cross between a Concorde, a railgun and an air hockey table."
In 1999, Musk co-founded X.com, an online payment company, which merged with auction payment system Confinity to become PayPal, which he sold to eBay in 2002 for $1.5 billion. Tesla Motors, co-founded by Musk, produced the first fully electric sports car, the Tesla Roadster, in 2008.