India may well become one of the first countries in the world, to start traveling by Hyperloop, if Union minister of road transport and highways Nitin Gadkari gives his nod to a pending proposal from a California-based startup.
Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) is trying to build a new mode of transport, called the Hyperloop, which could revolutionize the way people travel. First revealed by a white paper written by inventor/entrepreneur Elon Musk in 2013, the Hyperloop is a technology based on tubes within which bus-sized capsules travel at near supersonic speed — 1,200-kmph — due to low air pressure- cutting the distance between Mumbai and Pune in just 25 minutes.
HTT’s Chairman, Bibop G. Gresta, who was in India for a conference, said he recently met Nitin Gadkari and after several follow-ups his company has submitted a proposal. “Once it is signed we will immediately start the feasibility study in India”.
India for years has been toying with the idea of building high-speed bullet trains in the country, Gresta, however, says Hyperloop is a cheaper alternative. He said that it will only take 6-8 months to do the feasibility study, and 38 months to set it up.
It takes about $100 million to build a kilometre of high-speed rail network, while it will take only $40 million for a Hyperloop network.
Gresta said the project doesn’t need govt money, but only needs the land and approvals. Once that is done, he said he’ll get private investors to build the system.