If your gonna shell out 12 million dollars for a tube….. check whether it will RUST first!
The hyperloop is less than a year old, and its rusting everywhere on the outside. On the inside its completely covered with rust.
There arent many ways you can actually screw up a vacuum tube, but not only is the inside of the hyperloop completely rusted up, they also managed to paint over the o-rings in the viewing port.
I actually also had a chat with one of the hyperloop engineers. To be fair he only worked on the pusher, but he had never really thought about the viability of the project as a whole. He was a nice guy and let me have quite a poke around on the pusher and tube. Nonetheless he hadnt even considered the expansion issue. For me when I got the thermal camera inside the tube… I took one look and ‘QED’ when I saw the temperature differential between the top and bottom of the tube. He just had a blank expression of ‘so what?’
What they did get right is the thickness of the tube. The walls are about 2-3cm thick (~1inch). It would make a convincing gun barrel, and feels like it would contain anything that went wrong in the tube. The exception in the end of the tube. There Im not so sure.
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