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Students reach futuristic rail travel competition finals

31 July 2017

Edinburgh students heave reached the final stages of two global competitions, to develop an ultra-fast transportation system.

Made up of undergraduates from the Business School and Schools of Engineering and Informatics, HypED is the only UK team to reach the finals of the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod II Competition, with a proposed UK route, between Edinburgh, Manchester, Birmingham, and London.

The team has also made it to the semi-finals of the complementary Hyperloop One Global Challenge.

The brainchild of billionaire inventor Elon Musk, Hyperloop is a land-based transportation train-like system designed to achieve peak speeds of 750 miles per hour. Such transport could one day cut the journey time from Edinburgh to London – currently around four and a half hours by train – to about 35 minutes.

First proposed in 2013, the idea has since been developed by individuals across the world, countries including the United Arab Emirates and Netherlands, and backed by corporates including Musk’s own $250m Hyperloop One company.

Initial testing in Nevada, USA, earlier this month saw the Hyperloop One prototype reach up to 70 miles per hour.

Recent Business School graduate and HypED Head of Commercial, Carolina Toczycka, said:

“Demonstrating a full-system test is a true milestone for the Hyperloop vision as a whole, and means we are one step closer to it becoming a reality.

“In addition to our discussions with Hyperloop One, HypED is also working with the UK government, local councils and companies to build a business case for a British Hyperloop system that is sustainable economically, socially and environmentally.”

The Business School has also supported HypED team members Jack Noble and Nick Richardson to secure summer internships, with Santander Bank and Costain Group.