Air jet levitation

By Casey Handmer, Levitation Engineer, Hyperloop One. (Our levitation team is pictured above with the "lev rig" (L-R) me, Elliot Owen, Jett Ferm, David DeHaan, James Coutre)

There are seven billion of us. Ranked by wealth, each successive billion has access to exponentially more energy-intensive transportation technology. The richest billion can travel, at least once in their life, by plane. The next billion, by car. The next, by bus, then train, then motorcycle, then bicycle, and then foot. If we want to lift the standard of living for all 7 billion through better transport options, while staying mindful of our ecological footprint, we’re going to need dramatic improvements in transportation efficiency.

Why move humans at all? Technologies that brings people together to share culture, information, and ideas are economic rocket fuel. The efflorescence of culture in the Upper Paleolithic era was driven not by agriculture, metal use, or telecoms, which came later, but by greater exchange of ideas through face to face interactions. This enabled the collection and preservation of knowledge that gradually led to the present heights of our technological civilization. This positive externality of synergistic technological and economic growth is what drives the public and private sectors to build new and massively expensive transportation infrastructure.

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