Virgin Hyperloop announced that for the first time it has conducted a test of its ultra-fast transportation system with human passengers.
The test took place on Sunday afternoon at the company’s DevLoop test track in the desert outside Las Vegas, Nevada.
After strapping into their seats in the company’s gleaming white and red hyperloop pod, dubbed Pegasus, they were transferred into an airlock as the air inside the enclosed vacuum tube was removed.
It’s an important achievement for Virgin Hyperloop, which was founded in 2014 on the premise of making Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk’s vision of a futuristic transportation system of magnetically levitating pods traveling through nearly airless tubes at speeds of up to 760 mph (1,223 km/h) a reality.
The DevLoop test track is 500 meters long and 3.3 meters in diameter.
The track is located about 30 minutes from Las Vegas, out in the kind of desert that hyperloop pods could one day traverse in minutes.
The company says it has conducted over 400 tests on that track, but never before with human passengers — until today.
No one has done anything close to what we’re talking about right now — Jay Walder
It represents a scaled-down version of what Virgin Hyperloop hopes will eventually be a full-sized pod capable of carrying up to 23 passengers.