Meet some of the Teams Competing at the Hyperloop Competition II
The future of Transportation
Hyperloop pod race is happening today at SpaceX HQ! Teams from all around the world are gearing up for the opportunity to compete on SpaceXs Hyperloop test track. This will be the first time anyone gets to see the Hyperloop pods in action. The pods will be subject to a variety of tests, like a structural test and vacuum chamber test, and those that are eligible will get to compete in the final phase of the competition, which is slated to take place this this weekend.
In 2013, Musk declared war on conventional inter-city travel. In Hyperloop, people and freight are propelled in pods through tubes maintained at a near-vacuum. In the absence of air or surface friction, the pods travel at close to the speed of sound 1120Km/h, using low-energy propulsion systems.
Here are some of the teams competing at the Hyperloop Competition II:
MIT’s Hyperloop team consists of 28 students specializing in disciplines like aeronautics, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and business management. MIT says the pod is capable of achieving a top speed of 100 meters per second
University of Cincinnati: Hyperloop UC
The 30 students team representing Hyperloop UC hopes they can contribute to the technology they believe will ultimately shift high-speed transportation as we know it. They used a modular design for its pod so as to separate the passenger area from the engine. That way, there is a crumple zone in the event of a crash.
Team President Dhaval Shiyani, at right, admitted that he’d only slept a total of eight hours the previous three nights when this image was taken.
Virginia Tech: V-17
Virginia Tech’s Hyperloop team is composed of 29 undergraduate students and was one of three teams to secure the Pod Technical Excellence Award during the competition’s design phase.
The team’s original pod was named Vhyper and was designed to use cold-gas propulsion to achieve 644 Km/h. However, Virginia Tech changed strategies and designed a new pod, the V-17, for this weekend’s competition. It has a carbon fiber shell to reduce weight by 20% and no longer has a propulsion system.
University of Waterloo: Waterloop
The massive team of 150 students come from a variety of disciplines at the University of Waterloo based in Ontario, Canada. The prototype is about 0.8m (32") wide, 2.5m (8') long, 0.9m (36") tall, around 250 kg in weight, and will travel at 550km/h.
They are using a hybrid braking system that is mechanically fail-safe and functions even if all other systems fail. It has a combination of eddy current braking and friction braking.
The Electrical system is responsible for power distribution. Onboard power is delivered by a rechargeable 48V battery pack surrounded by a phase changing, fire-retardant matrix and enclosed in a sturdy PVC shell enclosure to keep it cool and secure.
The nervous system of waterloop pod uses a multitude of sensors and actuators. This embedded system is responsible for the control of all other subsystems, position detection within the Hypertube, and communications between the pod and a remote control dashboard.
Louisiana State University: Bayou Bengals
The team is comprised of 20 students who designed a pod that is 12-feet long and is expected to reach a top speed of 241 Km/h. Unlike most teams, the Bayou Bengals equipped its pod with an on-board propulsion system. The outer shell is made of carbon fiber.
The MIT team took the top honors during last year’s Hyperloop Competition I.