Months after Tanay Manjrekar became the first Indian to take a Hyperloop ride, Virgin has unveiled a passenger experience video that takes the viewer on a step-by-step process from arriving at the portal to boarding the pod.
An actual passenger ride on the Hyperloop could be several years away. But the video gives a glimpse of how travel times between cities can be crunched dramatically. As the passenger walks into the pod station, the ticket is booked, a pod and seat allocated.
Getting into the concourse is a breeze through a metro-like access gate.
Texts coming alive on the wall shows the podbay and pod numbers with two words standing out in big bold letters: Now Boarding. The passenger then enters a window-less pod, seating 28.
Spacious, cushioned seats with wireless charging points are arranged in two rows, separated by an aisle. “Please be seated.” Once this message is flashed onto the wall of every seat, the grips holding the pod are released. The pod now starts moving through the loop at extremely high speeds.
The speed, time left to arrive at the destination and a map are projected onto the walls. As the time remaining for arrival quickly drops, the passengers are shown in a relaxed mode with zero discomfort. The Hyperloop is shown as a straight line, mounted on pillars and tunnels piercing through giant mountains and even going undersea.
Once the destination nears, the pod slows down and gets into the designated slot at the portal where the passengers disembark. The 2.41-minute video also demonstrates how the convoy of pods travel one behind the other in the tube at great speeds, controlled by machine intelligence software.
“Showing the passenger experience of Virgin Hyperloop is a glimpse of the future, following the success three months ago when people rode in a hyperloop pod for the first time,” says the company chairman Sultan Bin Sulayem. “We are getting closer to commercialisation of what will be the first new mass-scale transportation mode in a century.”
Virgin had recently inked an agreement with the Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) here for a feasibility study on a loop linking the Kempegowda airport with the city proper in less than 10 minutes.
The company has another deal with the Maharashtra government to explore a 30-minute Hyperloop connection between Mumbai and Pune.