On February 18, 2018, Richard Branson from Virgin Hyperloop One announced exciting news regarding the future of the hyperloop in India with a historic agreement; the Indian State of Maharashtra has shown intent to build a hyperloop track between Pune and Mumbai, beginning with an operational demonstration track. With over 130,000 vehicles traveling the 2-3 hour journey between Pune and Mumbai everyday, and with the increasing population in the area, there’s a tremendous need to alleviate stress in the corridor’s transportation sector. With the proposed hyperloop, travel time between the two cities would be reduced from a 2.5 hour car ride to approximately 25 minutes on the hyperloop. Moreover, the new transportation lane has the potential to transform the greater society in addition to its transportation as Hyperloop One estimates a USD $55 billion (INR ₹350,000 crores) in socio-economic benefits, time savings, accident reduction, and operational cost savings, over 30 years of operation. These societal benefits will also be seen in the tens of thousands of jobs the project will create in addition to the environmental benefits due to the system being efficient and 100 per cent electric; the system will reduce greenhouse gases by 150,000 tons annually.
Long time readers of the blog may remember a previous post made in early December last year titled “The Hyperloop Dream Extends to India” in which the passion for the hyperloop in India was explored with the potential for a route there. In December 4th, there was pre-feasibility study made by Hyperloop One and the Indian State, with a full feasibility report and the detailed project report made shortly after. The announcement made this week appears to be India’s answer to these reports. With that in mind, it’s exciting to know there is an international presence for the hyperloop outside of the United States, which gives confidence to the technology’s viability and ability to connect the world with tubes!