Has China just finalised the world’s first hyperloop destinations?

by | 24. April 2023

China is likely to build its first hyperloop train line between Shanghai and Hangzhou, according to the nation’s top engineering and rail design institutes.

The 150km-long (93-mile) in-vacuum tunnel will allow maglev trains to travel at speeds of up to 1,000km/h (621mph).

The Chinese Academy of Engineering and rail authorities commissioned a “comprehensive assessment on the candidate construction sites for ultra-high speed pipeline maglev system demonstration line”, and the two richest cities in the east coast emerged as winners, said scientists involved in the project in a report published in the Chinese-language journal Railway Standard Design on April 17.

The academy is responsible for providing scientific and technological advice to the Chinese government. Top scientists and engineers from the academy are directly involved in the conception, design and construction of the nation’s largest infrastructure projects.

The assessment team was led by Zhang Yunjiao, a senior engineer with the state-owned China Railway Engineering Design and Consulting Group in Beijing.

An ultra-high speed pipeline maglev system – more commonly known as a hyperloop – was first proposed by entrepreneur Elon Musk in 2013. The transport system uses vacuum-sealed tubes to transport passengers and cargo.

China has taken the idea seriously because it has the potential to revolutionise transport and provide a faster, more efficient way to move people and goods.

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