• Sign in to Neowin Faster!

    Create an account on Neowin to contribute and support the site.

Sign in to follow this  

Official SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition

Recommended Posts

Zagadka    4,065

If they can get it to work cheaply... I don't know if it is self-sustaining. It might be like the Concorde. Yes, it works, and serves an impressive service, but it is complicated and expensive.

 

The hyperloop would have to compete with airlines. These have about 55 minute flights between LA and SF for about $75-100. Flying is unpleasant, but I imagine crowding into a hyperloop, with one car leaving at a time, would be very much similar. Even in a pressurized tube without being able to move around. I've taken the trip from LA to SF and Vegas dozens of times. Sometimes I enjoy just taking my car. Yea, it takes 4-5 hours, but it is very low stress, it saves money, and gives you transport when you get there.

 

Also, think about the terrain you are crossing. While I-5 goes through the mostly flat and long central valley, there is still a sizable mountain range north of LA, and a small one around SF, so it has to have turns and twists. The Tejon pass is the most annoying part of the drive. LA and SF to Vegas is about tfe same. Mostly flat desert, but it has its terrain. 

 

If you're connecting the cities, you also have to plop the thing down on flat land. Unfortunately, there tend to be buildings and roads around most cities. It would have to be totally elevated or buried for segments. In the Bay Area, you could track it along BART rails, but some of those are just in the middle of highways. In LA, you have problems.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
DocM    16,543

Standard pipe, linear weld or spiral weld, is available in diameters up to 3.92 meters.  2 meter pipe is a standard size. 

 

700 miles = 1,126.54 kilometers.

 

In terms of length, it's not unprecedented. The Alaska Pipeline is 1,287.4 kilometers long using 1.219 meter pipe . The Keystone pipeline will be 1,897.4 kilometers of 0.94 meter pipe.  2 meter pipe means bigger quake resistant pylons, beefier cranes and a larger steel bill.

 

 

 

Edited by DocM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
FloatingFatMan    18,680

"Standard" pipe isn't going to maintain a near vacuum constantly. It will need to be strengthened in some way, increasing the costs.

 

I'm not saying this technology isn't possible, it may well be.  What I'm saying is, it's NOT going to be as cheap to create as Musk thinks it is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
SALSN    54
23 hours ago, FloatingFatMan said:

And cost hundreds of millions of dollars to build...

 

The point of Hyperloop is that it's meant to be cheap and practical... Using alternative materials, or submarine strength construction is neither cheap nor practical.  Even just using steel, you're talking monstrous amounts of material needed to construct a loop between 2 cities.

 

Also, remember... That's LOOP, so to travel 350 miles you need over 700 miles of actual track, plus all the infrastructure to support and protect that loop. How the hell is that ever supposed to be cheaper than a slower train?

I'm using the submarines to demonstrate that differential pressure is possible without collapsing the chamber, I'm not actually proposing putting submarines up and sending the pods through a long line of submarines... What the cost is going to be I have will not speculate on, I'm only arguing that the technology is not the limiting factor here. However Elon's initial proposal was cheaper than that was proposed over the same distance, perhaps that was off, but I doubt he completely forgot about the cost of the tube.

Let's say for the sake of argument that the final solution ends up being three times the price of the train, I still think it is worth it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
FloatingFatMan    18,680
45 minutes ago, SALSN said:

Let's say for the sake of argument that the final solution ends up being three times the price of the train, I still think it is worth it.

If it's more than x1 the cost of the train, it's a failure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
DocM    16,543
5 hours ago, FloatingFatMan said:

"Standard" pipe isn't going to maintain a near vacuum constantly. It will need to be strengthened in some way, increasing the costs.

"Standard" items can include some pretty tough products, such as steel pipes which are friction stir welded. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
SALSN    54
8 hours ago, FloatingFatMan said:

If it's more than x1 the cost of the train, it's a failure.

The Concorde was a lot more expensive than subsonic planes, still had a lot of costumers.
But if course it is going to be a lot better for everyone if it can compete with regular trains on price.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
FloatingFatMan    18,680
1 hour ago, SALSN said:

The Concorde was a lot more expensive than subsonic planes, still had a lot of costumers.
But if course it is going to be a lot better for everyone if it can compete with regular trains on price.

It was also a failure as a viable means of mass transit, kept in the air only as an example of technological superiority.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Emn1ty    4,060
1 hour ago, FloatingFatMan said:

It was also a failure as a viable means of mass transit, kept in the air only as an example of technological superiority.

It was not a failure, in fact it was a big success. The problem was timing (oil crisis made it expensive to fly, so not many were sold). US banned transcontinental flights, which hurt it even more. And by the 90's you could fly luxury on normal planes for what you paid for on the Concorde. If the plane was released prior to the oil crisis it had to deal with, we'd probably have a lot more transonic planes (thus making it all that much cheaper).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
DocM    16,543

And a new generation of SSTs is coming, helped along by propulsion advances, fruitful research into reducing the intensity of sonic booms and the bigs looking into suborbital long range transports - no thick air, no significant drag or sonic booms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.