Their baseline optimization focuses on 5 subsystems: Compressor Cycle Analysis, Pod Geometry, Tube Flow Limitations, Tube Wall Temperature, and Mission Analysis
Initial results indicate that the concept is still very viable. However, due to very tight coupling between the tube and vehicle size, the tube size will need to be around twice as large as originally proposed by the Tesla/SpaceX team to reach the proposed speeds.
Feel free to download the entire analysis and play with it yourself, without purchasing several expensive toolboxes from MATLAB!
After going on a bit about requirements for different kinds of terrain, the kind of strata the road needs to go on etc. and how those were difficult and expensive to surmount (so curves were often chosen to deal with it instead of a more expensive solution). He lamented that the most difficult and expensive aspect of new road construction was right of way through existing developments and other properties. Most of the curves we experience on highways are apparently the result of somebody, or a block of people, simply not wanting to give up their land.
Most of the curves we experience on highways are apparently the result of somebody, or a block of people, simply not wanting to give up their land.
Nor should they have to, if they don't want to (or disagree on the price).
 http://www.history.com/shows/modern-marvels/episodes/season-... ... see "Paving America" for the episode
This is a real issue in many places now; when building a transportation system the government should be able to pay you whatever the house is valued and give you no saying on that, why? because the mobility of millions is more important than your emotional attachment to the house.
Ultimately, govt owns all land, and we pay taxes for our use of whatever we have title to. But the comforting delusion of ownership is universally defended.
You also have to factor mobility into the equation. If I own property that I'm using for a special purpose (let's use an extreme example of a hazardous chemical disposal company), and I'm told to relocate for the "market price" of my property, then I'm stuck paying tons of money and dealing with regulatory hell in whatever I choose as my new jurisdiction to do this. This would quite literally put me out of business due to the insanely high cost of relocating everything.
Also, you have the legal roadblocks that often come up (this is the more common reason property can't be acquired). For example, the property might be owned by a trust, which was granted it's powers through a will. Since it's a trust, the beneficiaries are unknown. The person who maintains the trust isn't returning your calls. Who do you write the check to? You can't just take it from the trust, it doesn't work that way (for good reason, without getting into specifics). There are ways to go about it, but the legal proceedings can take years. We're actually dealing with this exact problem now trying to expand an intersection in my local town.
Unfortunately, it's not as simple as just buying the land/structure and moving the occupants. More often than not, there's a reason why this is difficult.
1) The owners themselves, by self-declaring asset values for taxation purposes (on pain of having them vulnerable to eminent domain seizure if they under-declare)
2) Independent assessors who do value assessment for property tax purposes already
3) The sellers that granted the owners possession for a certain value
If you want to run a train line through an old-world country, you have to have the power to plough through the straightest path.
What's really not surprising, of course, is that over half of them are in cities built by the British!
Yeah; if by the British you mean actually the Honk-kong government that is the creator of the MTRCL, the company that build the system during 1979 -which helped them to receive a little bit of land- and became a private company in the year 2000.
Most of them weren't created by the British; who creates the rail system is the one that matters, not who "creates the city".
And the fact that so few of them are in America despite being bigger than all the other countries in the list (maybe even combined) and that so many of them are in Asia should help emphasize my point a bit because cultural aspects are also in play
American: Government wants my land to build a subway? Jackpot! I better give it a high valuation to squish as much money from them as I can; they screw my with taxes now I will screw them!.
Asian: The Government wants my land to build the metro system and they even will give me money for it? It's such an honor to be able to serve my community and all our generations to come with my little property.
Even if you accept that principle -- and while it's not unreasonable, I can also see reasonable arguments against it -- where does this policy end?
Let's get an idea of scale here. The entire UK national rail network currently supports approximately 1.5 billion passenger journeys per year. If we make some plausible assumptions about regular commuters, then probably 5-10 million individuals benefit from travelling on the rail network's approximately 10,000 miles of track more than occasionally. In other words, when you're talking about the mobility of millions, you're not really talking about building a small part of transport infrastructure that affects the property of a few unfortunate people, you're talking about building the kind of infrastructure that supports a population of 60+ million and gets built over many decades.
Let's also consider the likely alternatives. Major projects like new rail don't just affect a few square metres of someone's land when they pass through. Again picking on the UK, just because we have lots of conveniently available data about the new HS2 proposal, the government is now safeguarding an area 60m either side of the proposed route (for the first stage) so strongly that you basically can't do anything in that zone in terms of planning permissions. Obviously in terms of noise and potential disruption to local infrastructure and local travel arrangements, the effects of a major high speed rail link go far more than 60m from the track. So this isn't the kind of project where a single person with a 3-bedroom house is going to be throwing the spanner in the works. It's the kind of thing where an entire rural community is probably under pressure, or within cities with dense accommodation, potentially hundreds of residents in a single building, multiplied out by several buildings. The alternatives that avoid these problems don't just put a slight kink in the proposed route, they probably adjust the route over several miles to go around the entire area, or they relocate the routes and stations within the city so the new path isn't so disruptive, and maybe adjust the local transport infrastructure around stations to support this.
So, your idea of the mobility of millions vs a bit of emotional attachment to a house is not really what we're likely to be talking about for any single infrastructure project. What about some numbers on a more realistic scale? Does the convenience of 10,000s of people having a station a little closer to their office in the centre of the city so they can save two minutes of walking to work every day outweigh the inconvenience to 100s or 1,000s of people whose homes must be destroyed to make way or whose communities are split down the middle by the new route? Does saving a minute or two on a cross-country journey lasting hours outweigh destroying an entire community whose rural settlement is in the way? These are the kinds of argument that compulsory purchase/eminent domain really tends to raise, and they aren't nearly as one-sided as your comment about the mobility of millions might suggest.
That example also shows why "millions" is not an understatement.
If the estimates that the Hyperloop would carry in the region of 3,000 passengers (either way) per hour are correct, calling it 10,000s seems reasonable.
Indeed, it seems quite plausible that constructing something like the currently proposed Hyperloop would cause severe disruption to more people than would actually save a little time travelling on it in a year. Over its entire working lifetime, the number of person-hours lost because of construction effects might still heavily outweigh the number of person-hours saved because of marginally reduced journey times.
"the difference between a straight route rather than two curves on it resulting in adding 30 minutes to the traveling of every person that uses that route now, and in the centuries to come"
I didn't give that example because nothing we're talking about for either Hyperloop or the UK-based rail network is anything close to adding 30 minutes to the journey time. You're absurdly exaggerating the effects of rerouting. Maybe if you added numerous deviations to avoid numerous undesirable land conflicts you'd get to that kind of level, but in that case you have to balance it against numerous different sets of people who lose out in all those conflicts as well.
Basically, the idea of claiming large amounts of land where people are living right now to build infrastructure like the Hyperloop is about as blatant an elitist land-grab as I can think of. If it really were severely inconveniencing a handful of people to make life significantly better for millions you might at least have a decent argument, but the real numbers don't appear to be anything like that from any of the Googling I'm doing today.
It was just an example and I was referring to the appropriation problem not specific in this case; but even if you want to stick with this one you can see that the suggestion of the analysis is to build the hiperloop along the freeway; unfortunately many high density cities don't have one already.
Well, some napkin math: The current system travels at 110 km/h and the Hiperloop goes in a low-estimate average of 350 km/h, so it would save at least two thirds of the current time, if each one travels just 20 minutes using the BART system then let's say 190.000 people that would use the Hyperloop (instead of BART) would save 36932 years of time lost in the next 20 years (with assuming no increase in population, which is false), if it takes 10 years to be build and adds 5 minutes to the time of every car passenger (because it doesn't disrupt BART operation) and SF traffic is pretty good (meaning very low), and if SF moves ~270K cars daily and assuming one passenger it would mean 540K people so it would mean 18750 years lost. But one single lifetime is usually longer than 10 years so most of the people losing time now will be part of the people saving time later thanks to the Hyperloop. So even accounting for the time lost -in a rough estimate- people would save half the time they spend now traveling.
Many things I did not even take in account:
- This will not disrupt car because if you can take the Hyperloop and arrive in 15 minutes while you play Angrybirds or use you car but take 30 minutes you would likely choose the former every time (not just sometimes).
- Less Time save lives; if you are bleeding from a gun shoot arriving 10 minutes faster is the difference between life and death so it saved the rest of your lifetime.
Even if we had been talking about BART, to build a new system like that today, with around 100 miles of track and dozens of stations in urban/suburban areas, you'd have to buy up huge amounts of formerly residential land if the area was already well-developed. That would inevitably displace many thousands of people who previously lived there, as well as divide and blight the communities that remained. The social and economic costs of forcing a new system like that on a mature city would be staggering, and it would be likely that much of any new system would be built underground to avoid the damage on the surface.
But yea vroom vroom 200mph, etc.
If you have wider lanes, more lanes, better tarmac and smooth road with safety lanes, people can drive 150 mph without a problem. Like in Germany, for instance. If the road is not safe for 150 mph, then you should drive slower.
Nevada has tried allodial titles but they are largely a sham you basically pay your property taxes ahead, and yes, you can win if you start developing the land quickly, and then don't get into an accident and die somehow.
Basically, the land belongs to those who have the military power to defend it from others who might come and take it. Then that owner leases /doles/rents/sets-up-a-title-system+tax to whoever it wants. This is not different from the Medieval times. It is just wrapped in nice (or not so nice) laws and terms and so on, but at the bottom it is what it always was.
So in some state or countries, government can and will take your land away. Sometimes it will let other come and extract natural resources from it. In some places it will take it and give it to bigger companies to build malls or factories.
> to make this guy's job easier?
The road is not built for this guy to use, it is built for everyone else to use. One can turn that question on its head and say why can't all the citizens drive in a nice straight direct way saving time, gas, money because someone's farm is in the way? Talk about a sense of entitlement...
Things aren't perfect but I think individuals (in-duh-viduals :-) ) have more power than ever.
I'm also not sure that making straighter roads is the most important problem facing humanity. More often than not, governments will take that farm in the way (and they just did this over here in British Columbia for a new road they've built). The sense of entitlement is really that guy out in the suburbs who thinks it's his god given right to drive his SUV to the city every day on the straight or not so straight road and the people who want that cheap piece of plastic from China in their local shop driven by trucks on some straight or not so straight road...
It is true but at least there is no legal cover and language that make me think that I "own" it while I really don't. They would have to march in, beat me up and take my hammer. It would be rather unambiguous what is happening. Land "ownership" doesn't work that way. There are enough legal ways for one to be deprived of the "owned" piece of land.
Property taxes, land ownership is veiling in "ownership" language but in reality to me it seems if you have to pay someone yearly "rent" for it then you don't really own it.
> The sense of entitlement is really that guy out in the suburbs who thinks it's his god given right to drive his SUV to the city every day on the straight or not so straight road
Alright, what if the road was a bike path? Would that make it better ;-)
The general argument is whether something that is a public good should trump the needs of land owners. And I was just pointing out there are a few hairy details the way I see it.
You talk like there are these super wealthy land lords with nearly unaccountable real estate not willing to yield an inch.
The reality is, its some ones home. Just like I and you have. If you are destroying that, you better pay up good compensation. Which in most cases never paid. In my country(India) compensation paid is some thing like 5% of the actual land value.
Imagine some one just walking up to your home in full police gear, bulldozers and then just asking you to leave or get killed in the process of demolition. They will have the necessary legal documents and police support. You will be given some peanuts while you watch your property razed to ground. All in the name of 'public good'.
In New Delhi, the son of a judge used his connections to first acquire a land to build a mall inside a area which had very narrow roads. He built the mall, then figures out no one wants to visit the mall due traffic and parking problems. Guess what he does next? He further bribes officials and gets them to demolish a lot of homes to broaden roads, so that traffic and parking issues go away to help his real estate grow.
There was a massive uproar, as to how the whole system works. The supreme court of India, has now said no land can be acquired unless the owners of the land give a explicit permission and agree that fair compensation has been paid.
You talk like they are not. My hypothetical people in front of the future straight highway are richer than your hypothetical people in front of your hypothetical highway. I set up my hypothetical situation the way I want, sorry ;-)
> The reality is, its some ones home. Just like I and you have.
We have a home? That is still more than a lot of people have.
> Imagine some one just walking up to your home in full police gear, bulldozers and then just asking you to leave or get killed in the process of demolition. They will have the necessary legal documents and police support.
Ok, imagining that. Wasn't that my point? One doesn't really own the land unless they can defend it from violence. You'd have to be a country with military in order to have a proper allodial title. In countries with lots of corruption the abuse is worse, I can see that, it is obvious. I was pointing out that even in "law abiding" countries that law is written to hide the underlying brutal fact that people don't really "own" the land. Someone else owns it and they just pay rent (disguised as "property taxes" in our case).
> He further bribes officials and gets them to demolish a lot of homes to broaden roads, so that traffic and parking issues go away to help his real estate grow.
Well there are 2 issues. Bribery and corruption and taking from people to build roads. Well the first one seems more pressing. It covers all areas of life not just imminent domain.
> All in the name of 'public good'.
Isn't there or shouldn't there be a 'public good'? What is your alternative to say everyone just building on top of all the public roads that access the city so there is simply no way to enter or exit the city because there are buildings in the middle of the road? Is that acceptable.
Yes, but why does that always have to be at some one else's expense or by making some one suffer?
>>What is your alternative to say everyone just building on top of all the public roads that access the city so there is simply no way to enter or exit the city because there are buildings in the middle of the road?
Sound city planning.
It doesn't take much to make this happen. In my city atleast(Bangalore), I can tell you so many areas of the city that are developing even now don't have sound planning. Its totally reckless, and chaotic at its best. Absolutely no space for public parks, lots of open drains, narrow roads, badly planned water supply and sewage lines.
If you know for sure something is really going to grow, you might as well plan for it. Nothing really prevents governments from enforcing regulations even for private builders.
You can buy exclusive exploitation rights to this sovereign property but the state can get it back upon your death if it's not passed onto anyone or otherwise accounted for.
And then there's eminent domain, which is actually specifically provided for in the U.S. Constitution so it's about as legal as things get in the U.S.
Your perspective seems very specific to California's tax structure. I wonder how you incorporate "use tax" into your theories.
The distinction is that to seize my hammer they would have to turn violent, attack, assault or threaten. In that whoever did this would basically expose what is really at the heart of the issue. With land there is a legal framework to disguise pretty much the same thing but using "ownership" language. In reality, to me it seems, it is not much different or not much different from land owners in medieval times giving land to their subjects.
> Your perspective seems very specific to California's tax structure.
I think it pertains to most states in this country. I don't know of many states that don't charge property taxes. Most countries have something similar.
In Great Britain (from what I understand from marginal discussions I've had) this is more obvious. All land belongs to the Crown and it doles it out to tenants who dole it out to sub-tenants and so on. These are often Lords and Ladies from medieval times and their heirs still collect "taxes" based on that ownership.
I mentioned the use tax, and that California does not have one. Do you know what a use tax is?
This is where contract law comes into play, to protect vulnerable citizens from large entities with good or bad intentions. You are correct that how / whether such contracts are honored and the legal system is fair is quite variable from country to country.
As we're also seeing with this project, roads are not just for cars. The pre-negotiated right-of-way is also used for utilities, mass-transit and who knows what else in the future? It has negative effects on safety, the economy, work efficiency and other factors.
Because somebody doesn't want to be inconvenienced by a move that they'll have years of notice to make, or some farm doesn't want to shave off some fraction of their road-side property, lives will be lost, work will be wasted, pollution will increase, maintenance costs on keeping the roads and other right-of-way inhabitants will be magnified and more.
A new road isn't about just going someplace you've never been a minute quicker. Most roads are about making the time it takes from getting to a place I already go faster or at higher capacity. It drives development, decentralizes and spreads around economic activity, increases national productive output, stimulates the economy, it can increase educational and employment opportunities, make consumers of productive output more accessible and efficient to reach. A good road can be the difference between abject poverty for a region, or a new city.
If giving up my land for these projects will have such positive results, I should be compensated well above the market rates for otherwise similar properties, no?
And in most places there is nothing like the seller even agreeing to it. A court order is passed, you are paid some peanuts and asked to evacuate.
If you are in the UK, consider the debate raging over HS2, or the Heathrow expansion.
The high-speed rail system on the other hand, minimizes the amount of disruption. (and is also a proven technology)
We're looking at a (theoretical) $8 Billion system... that is probably grossly underestimating costs at that... that can only support 1120 passengers at a time, max. On the entire system.
Hyperloop may be fast, but it transports very very few people. A single-train will transport more people. Frankly, when looking at mass-transit, the #1 concern is moving people, lots of people and quickly.
Just like people today care about the "bandwidth" of their internet connections, I guarantee you that city planners are more interested in the "bandwidth" of a high-speed system.
At an 80min round trip running 20hr a day that's 15 trips per pod per day. So we have 40x28x15 = 16,800 daily round trips.
The Acela holds 360 people per train with 16 round trips per day. That's 360x16 = 5,760 daily round trips.
A high-speed system with dedicated track could run more often, and you could use longer trains than the Acela does, so the potential maximum bandwidth of high-speed rail is higher. But 16,800 daily round trips is large enough to be taken seriously.
(Why do I say "if it were possible"? http://pedestrianobservations.wordpress.com/2013/08/13/loopy... )
Really, Hyperloop needs to be compared against the entire Northeast Corridor... a single rail-line between Washington DC and Boston... but this single-rail serves many many more trains than just the Acela.
Or at very least, the comparison needs to be against Northeast Regional, a much slower train but is the one that your typical consumer is going to take. After all, Acela trains share its tracks with Northeast Regional... and most people prefer the cheaper prices.
(Between Boston and NYC, the link I'd most likely take, the Acela is only marginally faster than the Regional. The improvements planned in CT look like they would help, but actually cut similar amounts of time off the two routes.)
IIRC, Northeast Regional is considered to be at capacity around NYC (where it services on the order of 100,000+ daily commutes).
Anyway, the reason why this is being compared to railroads, is that the investment here is not measured only in dollars. When you build ground-based transportation of any kind, it necessitates blowing over some people's property... period. That is a real cost in people's livelihood, as the government forces people to move out of their homes to make room for the new road / railroad / hyperloop.
So when we're talking about an entire "Hyperloop" system that can only service ~16k / day in theory (and probably much much less in practice), these numbers have to be weighed against the costs.
True, both Railroads and Hyperloop suffer from this problem. But I bet you that the proposed California rail system will have significantly higher capacity... especially when the Rail system is going to connect up to the local metro systems.
In fact, the High-speed rail system goes directly to Union Station in the heart of LA. Hyperloop doesn't have such plans.
Airplanes are magic stuff though, because they don't have these costs associated with them, and in practice Rail isn't much more efficient than Airplanes anyway. But the airways are crowding up between the cities, so building alternative means of travel is necessary now.
When you have two garbage estimates, you cannot compare the two systems. The solution is to ignore the bad estimates, and recalculate the costs more realistically.
The fact that Hyperloop is modeled as a three-pylon design, and totally ignores some basic physics (such as Thermal Expansion: http://www.leancrew.com/all-this/2013/08/hyperloop/). So it is clear that the Hyperloop cost numbers are just straight up irrelevant garbage.
Granted, that is to be expected from an unbuilt, untested system. So I don't want to hate on Musk on this one. The nature of proposing an experimental design is that you won't have good data on it: costs, problems, theory... etc. etc. No one really knows how Hyperloop will _really_ work.
The benefit of High Speed Rail is that the systems have been built around the world. They have a better grasp of how much it is going to cost by nature of building their systems in other locations... and having experience with the problem.
That reminded me of the story of a (now empty) house that's
right next door to my new office:
It seems that the first 295 miles of the route can be accomplished .. without .. encroaching on private property.
Heck, on 880 in San Jose the highway goes from 3 lanes to 2 lanes and back to 3 again. WTF!
Edit: HS2 in Britain, for instance, is being designed with a maximum of around 0.01g vertical acceleration. If Elon's has figured out how to get passengers to handle 50x that much, he could save them a lot of money.
Some other figures I could find:
Shinkansen: 2.6 km/h/s = 0.07g
ICE (German HSR): 0.5 m/s2 = 0.05g
S-Bahn (metro transport): 1 m/s2 = 0.1g
Makes sense that metro transport has higher acceleration, as high speed rail spends a lot of time "cruising" at certain speeds, while metro transport is basically always either accelerating or decelerating. I'd guess subways also feature relatively high g-forces.
Admittedly I have not tried it but I don't think that would work.
How much you can spin the seat without those movements causing problems is an open question.
Airplanes are an encouraging precedent. They often make quite sharp turns at extremely high velocity, but tilt into them such that there's almost no perceived lateral acceleration.
However from the article chart, there would be more than 50 peaks at +/-0.5G in 35 minutes, that would definitely feel more like a huge roller coaster ride than anything else, so my bet is that it's just unbearable except for astronauts and fighter pilots.
He says: "However, I only used this information for plotting. For this first study, the derived route is only 2-dimensional."
And the graph's acceleration is noted as longitudinal and lateral. Not vertical at all. The word "vertical" appears nowhere in the article. All of the pictures show 2D diagrams of routes.
I don't know where this sub-thread about vertical acceleration came from.
A banked turn transforms lateral acceleration into vertical within the passengers' frame of reference.
1. Presumably, if lateral acceleration proves to be preferable to vertical acceleration, you just turn off the banking.
2. You control the precise amount of vertical acceleration by the size of the bank, so if there's some amount of vertical acceleration that's desired and some that isn't, you only bank hard enough for the desired acceleration. You also to at least some degree control the jerk (change in acceleration) so you can smoothly slide into the acceleration change as you bank slowly harder.
3. Importantly, this is only increased-acceleration in local "down," not decreased acceleration in local down. I don't have any scientific data to back this up, but it's the drops (ie, reduced vertical acceleration compared to gravity) that seem to nauseate people on roller coasters, not the climbs.
But most importantly, I think that people were badly misinterpreting this article (not the original hyperloop paper) in thinking that its charts were about vertical rather than lateral and longitudinal acceleration.
So, we react to the fear, find there's nothing to worry about and move on.
Ultimately, though, gathering attention this way is counterproductive because it inhibits the brain from taking in new information.
If we were invited to collaborate in the thought in a more relaxed matter, there would be fewer "stress-clicks" and more worthwhile, creative contributions.
The main purpose of the article is of course to promote the product of his organization through making a community contribution, so what do I expect. Maybe I'm just in a more serious mood on this day. We should be grateful to this person for pointing out this info to us :)
Their Shanghai Maglev only cost $1.2 billion.
China is clearly interested in building a 21st century transportation infrastructure. Beijing to Shangai is 800 miles. Perfect for 700 mph hyperloop.
Apparently 20-30% cheaper than places in CA for most things, but to buy an apartment it's more expensive.
Wages are 75% or so cheaper in Shanghai, but purchasing power is 66.36% lower too...
Seriously? The mean household income is US$4,700/year  (nominal conversion). Your link claims it's $12,000/year for an individual, but if you investigate further, that's the mean of the high-income expats who visited that English-language website about international costs of living and filled out a survey. The very existence of this large expat population skews the mean; I'd guess "typical", median wages are a lot lower than $4,700.
 "Average annual income for a family in 2012 was 13,000 renminbi, or about $2,100. When broken down by geography, the survey results showed that the average amount in Shanghai, a huge coastal city, was just over 29,000 renminbi, or $4,700, while the average in Gansu Province, far from the coast in northwest China, was 11,400 renminbi, or just under $2,000. Average family income in urban areas was about $2,600, while it was $1,600 in rural areas."
Income of $5000 would be approx $7700 PPP. Not exactly extremely wealthy by developed countries standard...
There's just something about being in a small seat in a concrete tube with no exit for 100's of miles that really freaks me out.
In terms of no windows, sounds similar to the Channel Tunnel. You're typically in the tunnel for close to 30 minutes.
You would probably have a huge interactive flat screen in front of you to ease the tension.
Most people can handle being in elevators OK, despite being in claustrophobic box full of people, hanging on a cable, inside a vertical tunnel. They just don't think about where they are.
Also, the structure would need to be tall (or short) enough to bypass highway bridges and overpasses...
It's a shame they haven't proposed a graceful cable-stayed structure.