Richard Branson and Virgin Group invest in Hyperloop One

Virgin Galactic

Virgin Galactic

Richard Branson is jumping on the Hyperloop train, the transport concept which could reduce the time it takes to travel between London and Edinburgh to just 50 minutes.

"For more than 20 years, Richard and Virgin have been at the forefront of transportation innovation, and a partnership with them feels like a natural fit", Shervin Pishevar, co-founder and executive chairman of Hyperloop One, said in a statement.

The pod quickly lifts above the track using magnetic levitation and glides at airline speeds for long distances due to ultra-low aerodynamic drag. The announcement today says that this new global partnership will continue to focus on Hyperloop One as a passenger and mixed-use cargo system.

But in order to build an operational system in the short timespan Hyperloop wants to achieve, it not only has to prove the technology is capable of safely reaching the super-fast speeds Hyperloop One proclaims it can hit.

Virgin Hyperloop One will join Sir Richard's sprawling business empire, which includes high-speed rail investments in Virgin Rail and his space flight venture Virgin Galactic.

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As a result, projected journey times in the United Kingdom include Edinburgh to London in 50 minutes. Earlier this year, the company completed its first test track outside Las Vegas.

"From our airlines to our trains to our spaceline, we have always been passionate about innovation in transport too, especially the development of technology that could transform people's lives. Importantly, Virgin Hyperloop One will be all-electric and the team is working on ensuing it is a responsible and sustainable form of transport too".

The maximum distance travelled was 436m, with a peak acceleration of 1.48G (0-100km/h in 1.85 seconds).

Branson said the company was working on "exciting projects" around the world but no lines have been confirmed as yet.

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