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Hyperloop Technologies Inc. gains support from LA Mayor and tries to emulate Elon Musk’s SpaceX

hyperloop vacuumHyperloop Technologies Inc. recently inaugurated its Innovation Campus in Los Angeles and at the same time, celebrated the hiring of its new CEO, Cisco veteran Rob Lloyd. At the event, the company hosted hundreds of affluent investors, artists, engineers and politicians, including LA Mayor Eric Garcetti. The mayor voiced his support for the company’s project to make a reality of the new mode of transportation first detailed in a white paper by Elon Musk  and teams of engineers at Tesla Motors and SpaceX. The idea of the Hyperloop is to create a reduced-pressure environment, taking the form of a tube, in which it will be easier to transport people or cargo in “pods” at high-speed and efficiency using a Maglev-like system.

When releasing the white paper, Musk said he was too busy running Tesla Motors and SpaceX to take on the project, but he open-sourced his design and challenged anyone willing to try to build this ambitious project.

Hyperloop Technologies Inc. accepted the challenge. Reportedly Musk isn’t directly involved with the company, but one of the co-founder, Brogan Bambrogan, was a 8-year veteran of SpaceX before founding Hyperloop Tech and serving as its Chief Technology Officer.

Speaking with BuzzFeed at the event, BamBrogan said:

“We’re definitely bringing lots of parts of SpaceX into it. I think the way we’re working is very similar to that on purpose.”

Although SpaceX is not working on commercializing the Hyperloop, the space exploration company is building a small one-mile track next to its headquarters in Hawthorne, California and organizing a competition for teams of engineers to test their Hyperloop pod designs.

hyperloop LA mayor

Hyperloop Technologies CEO Rob Lloyd, CTO Brogan Bambrogan, LA Mayor Eric Garcetti and Chariman Shervin Pishevar – Picture from Hyperloop Technologies Inc.

Musk wasn’t at the Hyperloop Tech event, but several SpaceX employees were in attendance, including Lead Engineer Chris Vasquez.

New CEO Rob Lloyd said the company will soon have “a family of solutions or systems” of Hyperloop technology to offer customers. The company is apparently working on solutions for both public transport and cargo.

Hyperloop Tech plans to have a two-mile test track by 2017 for demonstrations to potential project partners.

According to CrunchBase, the company had two early rounds of financing, which raised over $22 million, and they are reportedly looking to close a new $80 million round by the end of the year to finance the test track.

To learn more about Hyperloop Technologies Inc. you can read our report on the company when it came out of stealth mode earlier this year. 

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