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Hyperloop unveiled, to reduce Mumbai-Pune travel time to 25 minutes

Divya Hemnani | Updated on: 19 February 2018, 16:16 IST

The founder of Virgin Group, Richard Branson who controls more than 400 companies claims he will transport passengers from Mumbai to Pune in 25 minutes, saving about three hours.

The Virgin Group One has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Maharashtra government to build a hyperloop transportation system between Mumbai and Pune. This travel system will drastically reduce the traveling time between the two cities to 25 minutes. The announcement was made during the Magnetic Maharashtra investor summit.

During a press release, Virgin Hyperloop One Chairman said, “Virgin Hyperloop One can help India become a global transportation pioneer and forge a new world-changing industry. The Pune-Mumbai route is an ideal first corridor as part of a national hyperloop network that will dramatically reduce travel times between most of India’s major cities to under two hours."

The total cost of the project and an exact timeline of launch are yet to be finalized. Branson informed, "Three years from now we will finish the test run on this route and six to seven years from now the route will be commercially opened."

He also said, "We are in discussion with a lot of different people in different areas. I don't think we can give you anything specific right now. But we are going to tap into the best brains in India to make it possible. The cost of the cost of building a hyperloop is much less than building a high-speed railway line for the same distance."

Last year, the Andhra Pradesh government had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the US-based Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) to connect the cities of Vijayawada and Amravati. Currently, the travel time between the two cities is approximately an hour. With the Hyperloop, it will come down to a mere six minutes.

Most of us might not be aware, Hyperloop is the next-generation train system, which uses a magnetic levitation and a low-pressure transit tube. One can expect speeds reaching over 700 mph. The Hyperloop concept was first proposed by Elon Musk, the force behind SpaceX and Tesla. The technology has been open-sourced and Musk is longer directly involved in the development.

Branson shares Hyperloops importance, "If I was an Indian, a lot of my life would have been spent sitting in traffic jams. It is a miserable way of spending  life in traffic, it is waste of one's life and waste of productivity, there are better ways in which one can spend one life or time."

Branson said, “the Pune-Mumbai route is an ideal first corridor as part of a national hyperloop network that will dramatically reduce travel times between most of India’s major cities to under two hours."

Some of the important points shared by Branson:

Hyperloop will link central Pune, Navi Mumbai International Airport, and Mumbai in 25-minutes

It will connect 26 million people and support 150 million passenger trips per year

The Pune-Mumbai route could result in $55 billion (Rs 350,000 crore) in “socio-economic benefits, time savings, accident reduction and operational cost savings, over 30 years of operation”.

The route will be 100 per cent electric and could reduce greenhouse gas emissions up to 86,000 tons over 30 years.

 

First published: 19 February 2018, 16:16 IST
 
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