South Korea Moves Forward With Plans For Hyperloop Train

The Hyper Tube Express could cut traveling time from Seoul to Busan from three hours to 20 minutes.

AsianScientist (Feb. 1, 2017) – Eight South Korean organizations have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop a supersonic Hyperloop train, the Hyper Tube Express (HTX). The multi-year strategic partnership aims to accelerate the realization of government’s plan to build a futuristic transportation system.

The signing ceremony was attended by President Jung Mooyoung of Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), Mr. Hwang SeungGu from the Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI)’s Hyper-connected Communication Research Laboratory, Director Choa Yong Ho of Hanyang University, President Lee Tae Sik of Korea Institute of Civil Engineering and Building Technology, President Kim Ki Hwan of Korea Railroad Research Institute (KRRI), President Lim Yong Taek of Korea Institute of Machinery & Materials, President Lee Chang Woon of Korea Transport Institute, and President Park KyungYup of ETRI.

HTX is an ultra-fast transit system powered by magnetic attraction that would move at nearly 1,000 km per hour. This means traveling from Seoul to Busan would only take about 20 minutes. The trip is currently a little less than three hours on the Korea Express Train, more popularly known as the KTX.

UNIST, the only university involved in the collaboration, will be in charge of the design and implementation of the magnetic levitation system of the HTX. Currently, UNIST researchers are working on the designs for both HTX and its station building.

According to UNIST Professor Jung Yeon Woo, the train is 21 meters long and could carry up to 20 passengers. The station is designed as a round three-dimensional platform capable of rotating and circulating in order to prevent multiple trains entering into history at short intervals due to the super-fast operating speeds.

A key element of hyper tube technology, the air compressor sucks in air in front of the train to reduce the air friction and air resistance in the tube. UNIST researchers are analyzing the air flow system and studying the power supply system to ensure the stability of the train body.

KRRI said it will test electromagnetic and other core technologies while developing a blueprint for general infrastructure such as tubes. The institute will oversee the system engineering for three years. KRRI had already committed 24 billion won (~US$21 million) for nine years as a project endorsed by the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning.

“Across the world, countries including the United States, Canada, and China are doing their utmost to develop a new form of ultra high-speed transportation system,” said UNIST President Jung. “This partnership will play a pivotal role in contributing to the lives of human beings as well as securing the nation’s future growth engine by taking advantage of the core technology of the core components of the hyper tube.”


———

Source: Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology.
Disclaimer: This article does not necessarily reflect the views of AsianScientist or its staff.

Asian Scientist Magazine is an award-winning science and technology magazine that highlights R&D news stories from Asia to a global audience. The magazine is published by Singapore-headquartered Wildtype Media Group.

Related Stories from Asian Scientist