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Hyperloop is a revolutionary high-speed pod-based transportation concept that can take passengers from point “A” to point “B” quicker than the speed of sound.

In this episode of the Create the Future podcast, we speak with Dr Siavash Sadeghi, Propulsion and Levitation Technical Lead for Hyperloop Transportation Technologies—one of the world’s leading hyperloop companies. We discuss what makes hyperloop one of the most environmentally friendly methods of transportation, hear when the technology might be realised, and explore the engineering that underpins magnetic levitation—notably the 2022 QEPrize-winning innovation, NdFeB permanent magnets.

New episodes of Create the Future: An Engineering Podcast every other Tuesday. www.qeprize.org/podcasts

Episode highlights

  • “Hyperloop is a fast electric train which shoots a capsule inside a low-pressure tube. By reducing the resistant forces from aerodynamic drag, we can shoot the capsule at a higher speed, up to 1200 kilometres per hour.”
  • “Inductrack basically is a passive levitation system, so there is no power needed. We push an array of permanent magnets over a conductive plate and it levitates.”
  • “If you look at the capsule itself, we need about 600kg of magnets to lift it. it's a huge project.”
  • “I got interested in engineering and especially on the motors and controls and electronics from high school. I’m always looking for new technologies, challenging myself by moving from one company to the other to test different technologies.”
  • “It's a clean technology, that’s the beauty of the electric motors. You can have linear type, you can have rotary type, it's all interesting.”
  • “The heart of the Hyperloop is the propulsion and levitation system. Both use sintered permanent magnets. Permanent magnets are very important for Hyperloop because you cannot get a similar magnetic power density from other technologies.”
  • ”Getting kids familiar with new technologies is always good. At Hyperloop TT, some of the work we do involves bringing kids and teenagers in and giving them a tour to see the technology. It is very motivating for them.”
  • “Right now, it is a competitive market. We have many different Hyperloops, but I would say we are not competitors, we are friends. We just want to have this technology in the market so people can use it. We want to have an impact on climate change, we want to have a clean energy that we can transport people quickly around the world. There are different companies working on this concept and that is a good thing.”

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