Aecom to design first Hyperloop test track

Aecom has won the contract to design and build a test track for the world’s first Hyperloop high-speed transport system.

Hyperloop is a new form of high-speed transport proposed by SpaceX and Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk that would use a network of low-pressure tubes and air-cushioned pods travelling at speeds of up to 760 miles per hour.

The test track is being built as part of the SpaceX Hyperloop pod competition, a university-focused challenge to help spur student innovation.  A 1.8m-diameter steel tube will include a non-magnetic sub-track and run nearly one mile adjacent to SpaceX’s headquarters in Hawthorne in the US state of California. It will be built above ground and will serve as a vacuum-sealed, high-speed proving ground for transport pod prototypes being developed as part of the competition.

“Aecom has designed and built some of the world’s most impressive transportation systems, so we appreciate how the development of a functioning Hyperloop with SpaceX can dramatically expand the ways people move across cities, countries and continents,” said Michael Burke, Aecom chairman and chief executive officer. “What we are delivering is more than just a track to test pod prototypes; it’s a glimpse into the future.”

More than 100 university student teams from around the world are preparing to present their pod prototypes at the SpaceX Hyperloop pod competition design event hosted at Texas A&M University this weekend.

Construction of the test track is due to begin this spring.