Ioanna is a writer at TNW. She covers the full spectrum of the European tech ecosystem, with a particular interest in startups, sustainabili Ioanna is a writer at TNW. She covers the full spectrum of the European tech ecosystem, with a particular interest in startups, sustainability, green tech, AI, and EU policy. With a background in the humanities, she has a soft spot for social impact-enabling technologies.
Magnetic floating pods traveling through a series of tubes sounds like a scene from sci-fi movies, right? But what if they could become a new mode of mass transport? Yes, we’re talking about the hyperloop.
One of the companies working on the tech is Hardt Hyperloop. Since 2020, the Netherlands-based startup has developed numerous prototypes and test benches. It’s also part of the European Hyperloop Center and has received €15 million in funding from the EU Commission.
The company is developing hyperloop tech for passengers and cargo, enabling travel through a network of low-pressure tubes using magnetic levitation. The pods are expected to reach a 700km/h cruising speed and a 1,000km/h top speed, drastically reducing travel time. And sustainability-wise, the system doesn’t produce direct emissions and can be powered by green electricity.
We caught up with Mars Geuze — Hardt Hyperloops’ Chief Commercial Officer — at TNW 2022 and asked him what’s hyperloop’s advantage and which modes of transport are over- or underrated. The result was a fast-paced, fun video, which you can find embedded at the top of this article, or watch right here.
Geuze argues that hyperloop is still underrated, even though it can travel with 10 times less energy than aviation, or road transport. But optimistically, “in the latest survey, there was about 35% acceptance rating, scoring higher than autonomous cars,” he told us.
Trains and buses are underrated for Geuze as well. Trains, in particular, can aptly connect cities and provide high capacity with a lower carbon footprint compared to cars, he explained.
In contrast, Geuze finds passenger cars an overrated means of transport. “They’re the biggest contributor to your energy footprint and we need to shift away from them,” he noted.
But what does he think of golf carts… or pogo sticks? Click here to get his answers and watch the full interview.
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