Abu Dhabi hyperloop supplier inks Ukraine deal

Abu Dhabi hyperloop supplier inks Ukraine deal
Ukraine's hyperloop system will be the first of its kind in Europe.
Published: 19 June 2018 - 2:23 a.m.
By: Oscar Rousseau

Ukraine has followed Abu Dhabi in signing an agreement to bring Hyerloop Transportation Technologies' (Hyperloop TT) ultra high-speed system to the country.

Hyperloop TT signed an agreement with Ukraine's Ministry of Infrastructure to build a 10km track and bring the European country's infrastructure "into the 21stcentury”. 

Under the agreement, the two parties will start the process of building the first commercial hyperloop system on the continent, set to be financed by a public-private partnership (PPP).

The multi-phase project's 10km track will be used to iron out the regulatory framework, and get the safety accreditation from the relevant authorities, for the system.

Ukraine's Minister of Infrastructure, Volodymyr Omelyan, said: “Hyperloop is a key component to our goals of creating a smart, and sustainable transportation infrastructure."

Hyperloop TT's chief executive officer, Dirk Ahlborn, added: "This year we started the commercialisation of our technology with a focus on creating regulations, which are the biggest hurdle remaining to bring this new mode of transportation to the world." 

“These first commercial systems will allow us to create the necessary legal framework, which can serve as a basis for other countries around the world.”

Hyperloop TT signed its first commercial agreement for the high-speed transport system with Abu Dhabi developer Aldar in April this year.

This agreement is similar to the one struck with Ukraine's government, as it paves the way for the phased construction of the system, starting with a 10km allocation, which could eventually reach across the UAE.

The transport system will be built near Aldar's first affordable housing community development, the $2.7bn (AED10bn) Alghadeer project, which sits close to the UAE's twin engines of economic growth, Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

It is hoped that Phase 1 of the project will be delivered in time for the start of Expo 2020 Dubai, which has a start date of 20 October, 2020.

Hyperloop TT is one of two companies in a race in the Middle East to build the transport systems. Its rival is Virgn Hyperloop One, whose chairman is the British business tycoon, Sir Richard Branson.

Virgin Hyperloop One claims to have held months of high-level talks with Saudi Arabia's government, which is believed to be interested in rolling out the system as the country presses ahead with major changes to its transportation infrastructure.

Meanwhile, Virgin Hyperloop One and Dubai port operator DP World have created a new company called DP World Cargospeed that aims to revolutionise the export industry. The firm will build a hyperloop system that will transport goods globally at the speed of a jet.

Hyperloop is a form of autonomous travel that uses magnetic levitation to propel pod-shaped vehicles through tubes at speeds of up to 300m per second. Proponents say the disruptive technology will revolutionise transport and trade, by moving goods and people around at the speed of flight, but closer to the cost of road travel.

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