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With the recent news of the Hyperloop beginning construction on a 5-mile stretch next year, I was curious to everyone's opinions on the idea?  More importantly on this forum -- how it may relate to Ohio?  I've been reading about this idea since the beginning, but recently started to notice many of the initially proposed maps may bypass Ohio.  Only one includes Cincinnati and Columbus, but no Cleveland.

 

Although we are probably 10-20 years away from some actual infrastructure being built, how important is it for Ohio's leaders to ensure Ohio (and Cleveland) get on the preliminary plans?

 

Elon Musk's Hyperloop dream gains speed

CNNMoney-Aug 20, 2015

 

It started as a fanciful idea straight out of science fiction, but the Hyperloop is starting to pick up real speed.

 

The Hyperloop is Elon Musk's vision for a train that can move passengers and cargo between cities at speeds of more than 700 miles per hour. The plan, unveiled in 2013, calls for pressurized, above-ground tubes that span hundreds of miles.

 

Musk, who is busy with Tesla (TSLA) and SpaceX, had issued an open invitation to other companies and individuals to collaborate on the project. Several startups have answered the call.

 

http://money.cnn.com/2015/08/20/technology/hyperloop-elon-musk-progress/

 

Travel in a tube: Elon Musk's Hyperloop to start construction in 2016

 

Remember the hyperloop – the futuristic transportation system that’s faster than an airplane that no one thought possible just years ago? Well, the visionary Elon Musk’s idea just got a new lease on life: we could see construction as early as 2016.

 

 

A public opening of the five-mile test track in Quay Valley, California is slated for 2018.

 

Now, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) wants to prove they can shoulder the load that comes with creating something straight out of science fiction, and made the announcement on Thursday. The company will partner up with engineering-design firm AECOM, as well as the Swiss company Oerlikon, which specializes in vacuums – a technology that is key to the idea. The last piece of the puzzle is architectural firm Hodgetts + Fung.

 

https://www.rt.com/usa/313071-hyperloop-musk-pneumatic-spacex/

 

Preliminary map ideas currently show:

 

these-maps-break-down-the-cities-that-would-benefit-most-from-a-hyperloop-system.jpg

 

2984170900000578-3118864-image-a-3_1433966196646.jpg

 

HyperLoopTranportation_Map_USA_v4_copyright__c__2014_omegabyte3d.0.jpg

 

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This seems much better than my idea from 1994 after playing Secret of Mana to have Cannon Travel Centers spread across the country.

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Give me an email address and I'll start drafting testy emails to get Cleve on.

 

While you're doing that...  it would make A LOT more sense to have Indianapolis connect directly to Cincinnati, and then have Cincinnati branch off to Louisville and Columbus (or even Indianapolis->Louisville->Cincinnati->Columbus).  Having Indianapolis->Columbus, then two separate branches to Cincinnati and Louisville makes no sense.

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The Hyperloop is a dumb, dumb, stupid, dumb idea. It is a chimera that distracts us from what really is a simple and modest goal: dependable daily rail service between neighboring cities. An 85 mph daily train from Cincinnati to Cleveland or Chicago equipped with wifi would be an incredible asset. We as a society tend to design overly complicated technical solutions to problems when a political or social solution makes far more sense.  In this case we just need leaders with the wherewithal to reform our passenger rail system into a dependable and affordable service. Rail service should work in the Midwest which has a similar population density and city spacing as many areas of Europe where rail service thrives.

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^^I agree on the goal of dependable regional rail service. However, as someone who loves to travel and doesn't mind flying but absolutely *hates* turbulence with the heat of a thousand suns, the idea of a 4ish hour flight  (CLE to LAX, LAS and PHX where friends and family live) becoming a 2ish hour trip with no turbulence? Are you kidding me - sign me up yesterday!

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Because the technical challenges and costs are immense. You have to build a tube and keep it pressurized constantly for thousands of miles. You have to subject civilians with who knows what medical conditions to G forces during acceleration and deceleration- perhaps more unpleasant than airplane turbulence. The route would have to be very straight to avoid said G forces around curves,which would be challenging for route planning and right of way acquisition. You have to invent a whole new regulatory system with technical experts approving designs and testing so people don't die in accidents in the 700 mph tube with which no one has prior experience with. Also with no existing infrastructure of manufacturers and service companies to support it.

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Because the technical challenges and costs are immense. You have to build a tube and keep it pressurized constantly for thousands of miles. You have to subject civilians with who knows what medical conditions to G forces during acceleration and deceleration- perhaps more unpleasant than airplane turbulence. The route would have to be very straight to avoid said G forces around curves,which would be challenging for route planning and right of way acquisition. You have to invent a whole new regulatory system with technical experts approving designs and testing so people don't die in accidents in the 700 mph tube with which no one has prior experience with. Also with no existing infrastructure of manufacturers and service companies to support it.

 

Translation: "I think it's too hard!"

 

None of these things are reasons why someone with the capital and expertise shouldn't embark on a venture that will live or die by its merits.  I don't know much about the hyperloop at this point but do you really think that a entrepreneur shouldn't offer a new product because there are currently no service companies to support it?  Do you honestly think that will remain the case if this thing is built?

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Well, it IS too hard, given that a practical and viable alternative exists (passenger rail service) that is not being deployed effectively. Instead passenger rail service is vilified and mocked by politicians and special interests as being some sort of socialist monument to government waste. Meanwhile the Hyperloop is heralded by the media as a visionary idea from a Randian great man (Musk.) Perhaps my frustration here affects my opinion of the Hyperloop itself.

 

I see this as the equivalent of someone proposing Personal Rapid Transit (PRT, or individual pods on a track) in a city that  really needs improved bus service (which actually happened in Cincinnati around the turn of the century.)

 

 

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Except the alternative doesn't exist. Our network is at most capable of speeds of 150 mph. At its best our passenger rail network is nothing more than a slow alternative to flying and in many situations a slow alternative to driving. True high speed rail (a la Europe's, Japan's, or China's) would require entirely new systems to be built from scratch that are designed for speeds in excess of 250mph and don't have to ever share the network with freight trains.

 

The point of the hyperloop is to be the alternative to those. Which are insanely expensive. The hyperloop will hopefully turn out to be a much cheaper design so when we decide to build real high speed networks we have an option that is faster, cheaper, competitive with flying for distances up to about 1,200 miles, and has more frequent service than traditional high speed rail would have. A bonus is that they'd be significantly faster than any trains that exist meaning they'd be future proof for quite awhile. Even if we upgraded our current system it's still 30 years behind at best.

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700 MPH in a tube needs a perfect alignment, how is that going to be accomplished with multiple piers and footings over many types of soil?  Differential settlement will be a major issue.

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Is the perfect alignment needed for 700 mph in a tube where magnets levitate the train more difficult to achieve than the alignment needed for 350 mph on a mag-lev train?

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Also, most of the interviews I've heard/read state that the implementation isn't technically difficult.  If true, this could be one of those situations where a technology hasn't rolled out yet because it is prohibitively expensive to construct any cross country transit network from scratch.

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Almost every time something ambitious comes out we hear a segment get up in arms about how it's not realistic because of x & y.  It's disheartening.  It's most disheartening when it's a political leader who knows very little about it.  Are we forever stuck where we are today?  For the most part, the questions the internet comes up with have already been asked and answered.  Just because you think it sounds difficult or impossible certainly doesn't mean that it is.  Most people probably haven't even looked into it too much.  E.g. the g-forces... it's already been stated the g-forces would be kept to .5g or less because g-forces are a product of acceleration, not simply speed.  This is less than what you would experience in a commercial airplane.

 

The point is, it is not impossible and unless we actually take a chance to embark on big ideas at some point, we will be eternally stuck or fall behind other nations that will do something innovative.

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If it's cheaper than other ground-up systems, significantly faster than the fastest trains, and faster than planes for distances under 1,200 miles and due to smaller train capacities has more frequent service which gives people flexibility, I'm not seeing why it would ever be a bad thing. We're never going to have anything that's faster than 150mph without starting from scratch and as such there is no reason we shouldn't be forward thinking with anything we do build. Let's pretend the test track works perfectly and the estimate that it's 1/5 as expensive to build as traditional high speed rail comes true. Image how much less money we'll need to convince people to spend in that situation. And the end result is something that can travel twice the speed of the fastest train ever tested. That's nothing to squawk at and it's worth investigating. Especially if private companies are handling much of the cost of design and construction.

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Where do you get the right-of-way needed to see 700mph over any real distance? Maybe the Great Plains states? The technology is interesting for sure, and I hope it succeeds.

 

The point of the hyperloop is to be the alternative to those. Which are insanely expensive. The hyperloop will hopefully turn out to be a much cheaper design  <snip>

 

What gives you the impression this will be cheaper? Planes have the advantage of requiring practically zero infrastructure between points A and B.

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Where do you get the right-of-way needed to see 700mph over any real distance? Maybe the Great Plains states? The technology is interesting for sure, and I hope it succeeds.

 

What gives you the impression this will be cheaper? Planes have the advantage of requiring practically zero infrastructure between points A and B.

 

They're saying the right of way could possibly be done along (or in between) existing interstate highways.  Obviously that doesn't necessarily mean it'll be approved, but it certainly is a feasible notion.  It wouldn't interfere with existing infrastructure or expansion though, because it will be suspended 20-50 feet in the air.

 

Planes might not need infrastructure between points A and B, but they do run on jet fuel, are notoriously unpleasant to travel in, are delayed by weather, contribute mass amounts of pollution,  have limited numbers of flights and it costs oh 5-20 billion dollars to build an airport.  Hyperloop from LA to San Fran is about 6 billion (much cheaper than high speed rail and cheaper than most airports capable of handling large planes).

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And planes would be slower for distances under 1,200 miles as stated. And for cities as close as Cincy and, say, Columbus or Cleveland, planes aren't really even an option currently.

 

The infrastructure necessary for short plane trips is insanely expensive and is how you wind up with airports everywhere. There's no need for there to be an airport in Dayton, Cincy, and Columbus. A large, central airport that services all three and is only at most 45 minutes or so from the city would have been much wiser. But instead we have three airports, at least two of which are nearly completely underutilized and expensive.

 

If someone could get to Cleveland from NYC for example in only a handful of hours, including getting to and from the station, that's way more beneficial to Cleveland than an airport is.

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If someone could get to Cleveland from NYC for example in only a handful of hours, including getting to and from the station, that's way more beneficial to Cleveland than an airport is.

 

Intriguing concept. Unless I missed it, Cleveland's not on the route map as of yet. That's a little disconcerting.

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You're right...my example was just picking random cities but if it ever goes somewhere it better be included.

 

But that's the benefit of something like this. East Coast cities are relatively close to one another and air travel isn't an efficient use of resources or time to travel between them but our current rail network can't even remotely compete with air travel or in many cases automobile travel because it's such a flawed system.

 

Traveling between the east coast and midwest for business takes two days at the moment to travel to the midwest, do your business, and get back to the east coast. If that could be reduced to a long single day instead that could really improve business opportunities in the Rust Belt. Planes will never do that nor will buses or cars. Trains have the potential but not without a ground-up system. Therefore why not build the fastest ground up system?

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They're saying the right of way could possibly be done along (or in between) existing interstate highways.  Obviously that doesn't necessarily mean it'll be approved, but it certainly is a feasible notion.  It wouldn't interfere with existing infrastructure or expansion though, because it will be suspended 20-50 feet in the air.

 

Planes might not need infrastructure between points A and B, but they do run on jet fuel, are notoriously unpleasant to travel in, are delayed by weather, contribute mass amounts of pollution,  have limited numbers of flights and it costs oh 5-20 billion dollars to build an airport.  Hyperloop from LA to San Fran is about 6 billion (much cheaper than high speed rail and cheaper than most airports capable of handling large planes).

 

Are highways straight enough to get anywhere near the speeds being claimed? Definitely not between LA and SF, unless they plan to acquire new right-of-way. I hope you understand our skepticism -- the system that's never been built before will quieter, smoother, faster, and cheaper to build than high speed rail. Never mind the fact that it's an order of magnitude more complex than anything built before.

 

I hope it becomes the defacto standard for regional travel. As jmicha said, planes for short trips are a pain in the butt. I am trying to keep realistic expectations about how fast it will travel and how much it'll cost to build (and eventually ride).

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If someone could get to Cleveland from NYC for example in only a handful of hours, including getting to and from the station, that's way more beneficial to Cleveland than an airport is.

 

Intriguing concept. Unless I missed it, Cleveland's not on the route map as of yet. That's a little disconcerting.

 

The Paris-Marseille TGV travels roughly the same distance as Cleveland-New York City in 3 hours. It also has branches on conventional lines upgraded to 100-186 mph to Geneva, Milan, Barcelona etc. and uses existing tracks into Central Paris and to Marseille as well as most of the TGV system, only 40% of is newly built 300+ km/h lines. The other 60% is existing or rebuilt "classic" rail lines.

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The right of way argument is invalid, no? How is that any different than needing new right of ways to be purchased for real high speed rail? It's not like we already have those lying around ready to use. Regardless of the method of transit, high-speed anything will require new land to be purchased.

 

I don't think I agree with the "order of magnitude more difficult" argument either. Pneumatic tubes are already a thing, it's figuring out how to scale it up properly that is the question. But it's no more difficult than the efforts that were needed to figure out how to make trains comfortable when they increased from a max speed of 75 mph to 300+ mph. It's complicated, but not this insurmountable question to answer.

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Columbus to Cleveland in 12 minutes? Hyperloop could make it possible

 

NORTH LAS VEGAS, NV (AP/WCMH) – The Hyperloop One could travel as fast as 700 mph and take a person from Columbus to Cleveland in less than 15 minutes.

 

A low-profile block of aluminum zipped across a short stretch of what looked like railroad tracks Wednesday before crashing into a tuft of sand and sending a small cloud into the clear skies of the desert north of Las Vegas.

 

The seconds-long demonstration by startup Hyperloop One marked the first public glimpse of a propulsion system that its creators hope will rocket people and cargo through tubes at the speed of sound in five years.

 

To put it in perspective, here is approximately how long it would take to get from Columbus to cities around the country with the Hyperloop:

 

•Cleveland – 12 minutes

•Cincinnati – 9 minutes

•Chicago – 30 minutes

•Washington D.C. – 34 minutes

•New York – 45 minutes

•Orlando – 1 hour 21 minutes

•Los Angeles – 3 hours 12 minutes

 

http://nbc4i.com/2016/05/12/columbus-to-cleveland-in-12-minutes-hyperloop-could-make-it-possible/

 

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The Hyperloop is a dumb, dumb, stupid, dumb idea. It is a chimera that distracts us from what really is a simple and modest goal: dependable daily rail service between neighboring cities. An 85 mph daily train from Cincinnati to Cleveland or Chicago equipped with wifi would be an incredible asset. We as a society tend to design overly complicated technical solutions to problems when a political or social solution makes far more sense.

 

It's not going to work, and I don't know why people want it to work so badly. 

 

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It looks claustrophobic. Does it allow you to move around, much less get a Sprite and bag of nuts.

 

It's going to be like getting an MRI. 

 

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The Hyperloop is a dumb, dumb, stupid, dumb idea. It is a chimera that distracts us from what really is a simple and modest goal: dependable daily rail service between neighboring cities. An 85 mph daily train from Cincinnati to Cleveland or Chicago equipped with wifi would be an incredible asset. We as a society tend to design overly complicated technical solutions to problems when a political or social solution makes far more sense.

 

It's not going to work, and I don't know why people want it to work so badly. 

 

 

I agree. That $6 billion tag for an LA-SF line is the lowest estimate. Beyond all the basic efficiency, comfort and safety issues, the tubes can't really have bends for the pneumatics to work. Also, a very small puncture in one tube segment will shut a whole line down. Security on this network will have to be through the roof. Maybe this will be feasible if humans colonize the Moon or Mars but it's just not realistic travel for this planet.

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The Hyperloop is a dumb, dumb, stupid, dumb idea. It is a chimera that distracts us from what really is a simple and modest goal: dependable daily rail service between neighboring cities. An 85 mph daily train from Cincinnati to Cleveland or Chicago equipped with wifi would be an incredible asset. We as a society tend to design overly complicated technical solutions to problems when a political or social solution makes far more sense.

 

It's not going to work, and I don't know why people want it to work so badly. 

 

 

Said every naysayer about steam engines, automobiles, airplanes, high speed rail, maglev, electric cars, faster-than-sound air travel, the space shuttle, landing on the moon, intercontinental railroads, a plethora of "world's largest" ships, the space station, the construction of early skyscrapers, the Hoover Dam, an endless stream of bridges, the internet, wifi, smartphones, laptops, etc., etc., etc.

 

Failing to see the benefit of a major increase in the speed of land travel requires a complete inability to grasp the benefit of technological advance while living in a world that has relied on technological advances that people like yourself claimed wouldn't work.

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The Hyperloop is a dumb, dumb, stupid, dumb idea. It is a chimera that distracts us from what really is a simple and modest goal: dependable daily rail service between neighboring cities. An 85 mph daily train from Cincinnati to Cleveland or Chicago equipped with wifi would be an incredible asset. We as a society tend to design overly complicated technical solutions to problems when a political or social solution makes far more sense.

 

It's not going to work, and I don't know why people want it to work so badly. 

 

 

Said every naysayer about steam engines, automobiles, airplanes, high speed rail, maglev, electric cars, faster-than-sound air travel, the space shuttle, landing on the moon, intercontinental railroads, a plethora of "world's largest" ships, the space station, the construction of early skyscrapers, the Hoover Dam, an endless stream of bridges, the internet, wifi, smartphones, laptops, etc., etc., etc.

 

Failing to see the benefit of a major increase in the speed of land travel requires a complete inability to grasp the benefit of technological advance while living in a world that has relied on technological advances that people like yourself claimed wouldn't work.

 

If it's going to work you need scalability. Think of the amount of passengers that fly in the United States alone. People don't really comprehend it. Now transfer that total to users who can only use certain tubes to travel from place to place. If one capsule breaks down, then what? A bigger tube? More tubes? How many tubes will it take for travel between Cincy and C'bus? What about DC to Boston? Or Chicago to Denver? What about State College? Bangor? Cheyenne? Bismarck? Fairbanks? All these cities have air service. Do they get tubes? Now think of the NIMBY urban areas that won't want 700-mph "trains" moving through their neighborhoods. Think of the safety hurdles. The security issues. I don't think Elon Musk really has on this one. It looks cool don't get me wrong. This would be great for connecting areas on another planet that is mainly flat, like the Moon.

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But literally every single thing you just asked was asked about many of the things I listed above. Scalability being the big one. It's not like commercial flights went from nonexistent to where they are today overnight. It's not like rail travel went from nonexistent to a major network throughout the world in one fell swoop. All these things took significant time, money, and perseverance.

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Here's why this Hyperloop non-sense is super foolish.  5 years? come on.  $6 billion? are you serious?  NEIGHBORS AND PROPERTY OWNERS will shut this thing down.  you can't buy the needed real estate in CA for $6 billion, let alone build a transit system. The CAHSR has been slowed down so much by lawsuits over property rights, etc.  Plus, since it's gonna be privately owned you can't use eminent domain in most places. 

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But literally every single thing you just asked was asked about many of the things I listed above. Scalability being the big one. It's not like commercial flights went from nonexistent to where they are today overnight. It's not like rail travel went from nonexistent to a major network throughout the world in one fell swoop. All these things took significant time, money, and perseverance.

 

You mention all the transportation modes that have succeeded but think about how many modes of transportation that have failed because they couldn't scale. I don't really see this working without doing something crazy like banning or severely limiting air travel. Because the costs of infrastructure on the tube network alone will outweigh any advantages it has. But it could work in a place where other modes of travel would be impossible.

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Here's why this Hyperloop non-sense is super foolish.  5 years? come on.  $6 billion? are you serious?  NEIGHBORS AND PROPERTY OWNERS will shut this thing down.  you can't buy the needed real estate in CA for $6 billion, let alone build a transit system. The CAHSR has been slowed down so much by lawsuits over property rights, etc.  Plus, since it's gonna be privately owned you can't use eminent domain in most places. 

 

In California a private citizen can exercise eminent domain rights as long as the taking is for a public use.

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People will have to drive or get to a centralized "station" in some way.  This means all of the hassle of getting to an airport or train station that now exists, on both ends of the loop.  So at least 30 minutes on each end just to get to the loading/unloading station.  That means the hyperloop needs to actually be going at least 300mph for it to be even remotely feasible -- I don't have to be an engineer to know that increases in cruising speed require exponentially more exacting construction.  You're talking just a millimeter of misalignment per mile, something ridiculous like that. 

 

I have a friend who covers Tesla and other science stuff for a living.  It's a company that produces advice for investors.  Musk is really a master of taking other people's ideas and acting like they're his own, and that everything is "so easy", and getting the fanboys all shouting his praises.  He thinks Musk is really jumping the shark on this one. 

 

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Plus, since it's gonna be privately owned you can't use eminent domain in most places. 

 

Not true. Railroads are one of the few private concerns that have eminent domain powers under federal law.

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In three dimensional space, velocity is a directional vector, so any change in direction counts as acceleration even if your numeric speed remains the same. Since people feel the forces caused by acceleration, you couldn't go anywhere close to your top speed in places where there are curves in the tube.  This would mean slower travel through metro areas and higher land acquisition costs due to the need to maintain a straight path no matter what's in the way. So calculating travel times between cities is way more complicated than just looking at speed and distance which is what that news article above did.

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