IIT Madras Students’ Hyperloop Only Asian Entry in Finals of SpaceX Competition

Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras’ team Avishkar Hyperloop has debuted as finalists and the only Asian team to qualify for the finals of SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition 2019. It was one of the top 21 teams out of more than 1,600 teams participating globally in this event.

Team Avishkar, consisting of 40 students collaborated on this hyperloop pod development from their homes to completely revamp the pods’ sub-systems with scalable and efficient technologies.

Besides, the students have qualified for the European Hyperloop Week to be held in Valencia, Spain, from July 19 to 25. The team will participate in the event virtually due to the pandemic-related travel restrictions.

Hyperloop is the fifth mode of transportation, a high-speed train that travels in a near-vacuum tube. The reduced air resistance allows the capsule inside the tube to reach speeds of more than 1000 km/h. Elon Musk had proposed the idea of the hyperloop to the world in 2013 through a whitepaper – ‘Hyperloop Alpha.’

Avishkar Hyperloop is the student team from Centre For Innovation (CFI), IIT Madras working on an indigenous design and development of a self-propelled, completely autonomous hyperloop pod in India. The team is working with a vision to develop technologies for future modes of high-speed transportation with applications in various fields including defence, logistics, and aerospace industry, among others.

In the past few months, they have manufactured a Hyperloop Pod Prototype and tested the novel technology, IIT Madras said.

The European Hyperloop Week is a confluence of student teams, start-ups, and companies working in the hyperloop domain. It will act as a boiling pot for discussions on the reliability, scalability, and feasibility of this future technology. The competition is being organised by four well-known European student teams in partnership with companies such as Virgin Hyperloop and AECOM.

Deloitte India has provided crucial support to the team’s efforts towards the European Hyperloop Week competition.

“Our research has yielded many technological breakthroughs such as the linear induction motor for propulsion, teams’ proprietary levitation technology, and contactless magnetic braking system, among others. Looking beyond the pod, the team is also focusing efforts on the design of the hyperloop infrastructure,” said Neel Balar, Team Avishkar Lead and Third Year Student, Department of Engineering Design, IIT Madras.

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