Sir Richard Branson recently announced West Virginia will be the future home of the Virgin Hyperloop Certification Center.
The half-billion-dollar project will be south of Morgantown on the site of a former coal mine in Grant and Tucker counties. An estimated 150-200 engineering and technical jobs will be filled, along with 13,000 local jobs via construction, manufacturing and maintenance. The Hyperloop Certification Facility will feature its own test track and be the center of regulation and developments.
The concept of the Hyperloop is quite interesting. Hyperloop is an open-sourced technology. The idea originated from Elon Musk, who has encouraged others to develop it. The Hyperloop could re-imagine travel and reshape modern life.
The Hyperloop uses passive magnetic levitation to raise its capsules into the air. These capsules are in a tube that is scheduled to be connected to several major cities. These capsules can transport cargo or passengers in minutes.
The Hyperloop could connect Pittsburgh to Columbus in 45 minutes for a price of roughly $60 a ticket. Currently, a flight from Pittsburgh to Columbus is over $100 and takes roughly 30 minutes. The drive from Pittsburgh to Columbus is three hours.
The Hyperloop will save time and money and connect the world in a much more effective way. With the Hyperloop being a faster, more cost-effective mode of travel, it could encourage people to travel more – and maybe broaden employment opportunities.
The possibilities and benefits are endless. Groundbreaking will be late next year with certifications by 2025.