Elon Musk's Hyperloop May Qualify For Federal Funding
Although Elon Musk's vision of levitating, high-speed pods zipping through a highway tube has been called crazy by some, the US Transportation Secretary said it may be eligible for government funding.
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US Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx issued his support for Elon Musk's Hyperloop idea, suggesting the project may be eligible for government funding.
Hyperloop is currently a conceptual idea, one that has met with its fair share of skepticism, aiming to create a new form of transportation that uses levitating, high-speed pods that zip through a highway tube between San Francisco to Los Angeles.
While Foxx initially was highly skeptical of the concept, he said during the keynote address at the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition in Texas on Friday, according to The Verge, "(The government) should not take, and have not taken a reflexive 'no' position to innovation... And that's the signal I wanted to send today."
Foxx noted the Hyperloop project may be eligible for funding under the government's University Transportation Centers grant program, which has given $72.5 million annually to over 30 research centers across the US, according to a Fortune report.
In addition to Musk's SpaceX, other companies involved include Hyperloop Transportation and Hyperloop Technologies. The Hyperloop project is seeking to raise $80 million by the end of this year, in its second venture-funding round, according to Fortune, which noted it had raised $8.5 million in its first funding round.
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The project is expected to ultimately cost $8 billion to build the San Francisco to Los Angles transport, according to a Fortune report. The test track alone is expected to require $100 million to build and plans to break ground on this track are expected to begin soon in California.
Although the idea for Hyperloop was born from Musk's SpaceX, neither Musk nor SpaceX are affiliated with any of the Hyperloop companies, according to a SpaceX blog post. But SpaceX and Musk do want the project to move forward. They were the creators of the Hyperloop Pod Competition.
With the Transportation Secretary voicing support for the Hyperloop project, it raises the possibility more venture investors will also be willing throw money into the plans.
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