Captain America inspiration behind Vienna Hyperloop
The Local · 26 May 2016, 12:58
Published: 26 May 2016 12:58 GMT+02:00
Like something straight out of a science fiction film, the Hyperloop transport system that will connect Vienna and Bratislava is designed to shoot passenger pods down a tube at 760mph.
The system created by Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) hopes to cut travel time between the two cities down to just eight minutes.
Now it’s creator has revealed that of the high-tech material that will help transport passengers through a semi-vacuum tube at top speeds is called “Vibranium”.
Fans of Marvel Comic’s Captain America will no doubt recognise the name, which was first used to describe the nearly indestructible metal the superhero’s shield is made from.
Unveiling the material at Vienna’s Pioneers Festival this week, HTT CEO Dirk Ahlborn - a self-confessed comic book fan - admitted the name was inspired by Marvel’s fictional Vibranium.
It may not actually have any superhero powers, but the real-life Vibranium is still "eight times stronger than aluminium and 10 times stronger than steel alternatives,” according to Ahlborn.
The material - created in collaboration with a Slovakian company - is designed to provide a coating for the Hyperloop passenger pods, ensuring they stay protected even if the exterior gets damaged.
The idea of a hyperloop transport system was originally thought up by Elon Musk, an entrepreneur who heads up Tesla Motors and SpaceX.
Musk deliberately left the idea open for others to develop and several companies are working on turning the concept into a reality.
This deal between Hyperloop Transportation Technologies and Slovakia is the first time a project using this technology has been proposed outside the US, where a few companies are already exploring the idea.