Hyperloop One has made another major milestone since the first propulsion open-air test. The Hyperloop One test vehicle, or more correctly, a sled, hurled down the near-vacuum test track and levitated by the virtue of magnetic levitation for a good 3 seconds before coming to a halt on its own. The first full scale system test was conducted in private, witnessed by 200 hundred engineers and staff on May 12, 2017. During the test, the team tested the entire system ranging from the motor to the levitation technology to the vacuum pumping system, for the very first time.
In the video, which you can find after the break, you can see DevLoop test engineer James D’Entremont going through the sequence of checks with the team before finally firing off the sled. About a second after the sled rockets down the track, the rumbling from the wheel mounts contacting the track stops as the pod lifted and glided the rest of the way. It was milestone indeed and one that marks the inevitable complete test at Hyperloop One’s DevLoop site in the desert north of Las Vegas, unveiled earlier this March. At the point of the test, the sled was zipping through a near-vacuum environment with a pressure of around 5 pascals, making it (the test tube) the fourth largest vacuum chamber in the world, and the biggest in private hands, Hyperloop One said.
On this momentous day in May, Hyperloop One also unveiled XP-1, the pod that the company will be using for future full system tests moving forward. The XP-1 is a sleek pod composed of carbon fiber and aluminum aeroshell atop of Hyperloop One’s levitating chassis. The levitating chassis in itself is where all the magic happens with you know, stuff like the suspension, lift and guidance system, and of course, the propulsion. Think of it as a tricked out sled.
Keep on going to catch the test video, but be warned: non-geeks may not have the patience to endure all the checks and so, if you aren’t one with the patience, you may want to skip ahead to 2:11 mark for the short but pretty darn awesome moment.
Images: Hyperloop One.