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Monday, February 1, 2016

MIT Hyperloop Team Rockets Past Competition

As reported by the Boston HeraldIt may seem like so much pie in the sky right now, but a globally embraced dream of creating a levitating, 700-mile-per-hour public transit system is already coming true for enterprising engineers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who learned Saturday that their design of a futuristic bullet train bested 100 others submitted from around the world for the SpaceX Hyperloop.

“Wow! We are beyond excited to announce we just won 1st place in the SpaceX Hyperloop competition!!!!!!!!” the MIT Hyperloop team posted on Facebook from the weekend competition at Texas A&M University, along with a video showing them erupting in screams, whistles and applause as their winning entry was announced.

MIT’s team of more than two dozen graduate and undergraduate students will receive $50,000 from Hyperloop Technologies Inc. to build their creation.

Powered by renewable energy, Hyperloop aims to rocket floating passenger pods through elevated tubes at nearly the speed of sound. California-based aerospace company SpaceX, which sponsored the design competition, is planning to start testing human-scale pods on a specially designed track as early as this summer.

Elon Musk, SpaceX’s billionaire brainiac, told the awards ceremony his inspiration for Hyperloop comes from being stuck in Los Angeles traffic and being an hour late for a speech.

“I’m starting to think this is really going to happen,” Musk said. “It’s clear that the public and the world wants something new, and it’s clear that you guys are going to bring it to them.”