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China Hyperloop Hype Update: HTT to Build Track for 1,000kmph Trains in Guizhou

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Crowdsourced “flying train” developer Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) has inked a deal with authorities in Tongren, in southwest China’s Guizhou Province, to build a track for trains that it claims will be capable of reaching speeds of 1,000kmph.

A statement from HTT reads:

HyperloopTT will be responsible for providing technology, engineering expertise, and essential equipment. Tongren will be responsible for certification, regulatory framework, and construction of the system. HyperloopTT will work in partnership with the government of Tongren in defining the route for the system. Financing will be done through a public private partnership with 50% of the funds coming directly from Tongren.

There aren’t too many details beyond that just now, though Engadget reports that the track will only be about 10km long, which means, “At that short distance, it’s not likely that the tube will be able to reach the speeds that Hyperloop promises, at least on paper.”

It could mean it’ll be a bit like Shanghai’s maglev (magnetic levitation train): technically capable of dizzying speeds, but practically limited to operating below its top speed.

For his part, HTT CEO Dirk Ahlborn paid lip service to the “Silk Road Economic Belt” while also stating that “the unique topography of Tongren will allow us to refine our various construction methods with our partners.”

The announcement comes a few months after scientists in Sichuan completed “the world’s first prototype testing platform for an ultra-high-speed vacuum magnetic levitation (maglev) train”, and follows the Chinese Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) plans for a supersonic “flying train”, which were revealed last year.

Cover image: HTT

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