Hyperloop: Research on the Transport of the Future will also be in Toulouse

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The levitating capsule project in low pressure tubes carried by the company Hyperloop Transportation Technologies

INNOVATION: One of two companies working in the transport of the future Hyperloop decided to locate its European R & D center in Toulouse …

Travel comfortably installed on powered capsules to over 1200 km/h in air tubes. This futuristic transportation, Jules Verne and his son Michael had already portrayed in The Day of an American journalist in 2889.

But in 2013, the founder of Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk, has made a project Hyperloop. Since then, both companies are working to achieve this revolutionary concept, trying to go from dream to reality.  And one of them, Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT), decided to locate its center of research and development in Toulouse.

And more specifically on the former air base Francazal which are already installed companies specializing in drones or autonomous shuttles that have just been put into service in Paris.

Test Track 1km

In a building of 3,000 m2, in addition to the R & D center where thirty engineers and PhD plancheront on issues of levitation, or composite fuselage, a laboratory, and an academy Lab Hyperloop interacting with universities and research laboratories also emerge. A test track with a length of 1 km will be built to test prototypes.

A total of 50 jobs will be created quickly and $40 million will be invested over the first five years by HTT on the Toulouse site.

Computer image of the test track Hyperloop to Francazal
Computer image of the test track Hyperloop to Francazal. – Agence François Leclercq / TT Hyperloop

And if the leaders of HTT decided to put their suitcases in to Toulouse, this is no accident. “Toulouse is a historic innovation. Here there are many resources in technologies aeronautics and space and that is parallel to our business, including issues aerodynamics. Here we have a concentration of gray matter that is not found everywhere, “emphasizes Dirk Ahlborn, a co-founder of the company.

Research partnership

And they hope to use these resources to be at the forefront of innovation. The goal is to build partnerships, including with major companies in the sector.

Proposed Hyperloop Test track in Toulouse
The proposed test track Hyperloop worn by HTT on the former military base Fancazal, south of Toulouse. – Agence François Leclercq / TT Hyperloop

Especially as the HTT bosses do not hide their desire to see investors get involved with them to develop their Hyperloop project. Either financially or by providing skilled engineers.

And some are willing to answer this. “There are dreams in this project can become reality. What is lacking today is their industrialization for a hugh-tech system and affordable. We, we are very strong here for that, “argues Jean-Luc Maté, chairman of Automotech cluster which brings together the major players in the automotive industry in the region.

Support which could make the project a reality more quickly. For if HTT has signed an agreement for the feasibility study of a Hyperloop link between Brno, Czech Republic, and Bratislava, Slovakia, and a partnership with the government of Abu Dhabi, its competitor Hyperloop One advance also.

In France, SNCF decided to invest in this California start-up has already conducted tests in the Nevada desert. The question is when the first transport Hyperloop will be commissioned to link two cities.

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