Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) announced that its futuristic capsule will be made with a carbon fiber composite material, which it is naming “Vibranium” after the fictional material used to protect Captain America. Hyperloop collaborated with Slovakian materials firm c2i on the composite, which will cover the inside and outside of its capsules.
“With HTT and other Slovakian scientists we helped develop Vibranium, a new smart material, which is the perfect solution for a safe system,” said c2i founder Patrick Hesel. Dirk Ahlborn, CEO of Jumpstartfund and Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, added “Safety is one of the most important aspects of our system. We are 10 times safer than an airplane. Our collaboration with Slovakia and their technical skills in new materials, automotive and production processes have made this technology possible.”
According to Ahlborn, c2i’s experience and expertise in engineering carbon fiber structures for next-generation cars and aircraft made them an ideal partner.
“The challenges shown by the Hyperloop System are a perfect fit for the technical know-how available in Slovakian automotive [processes], new material[s], and production processes.”
Hyperloop says its carbon fiber composites are eight times stronger than aluminum and 10 times stronger than steel alternatives. It is also much lighter in weight—roughly five times less than steel and 1.5 times less than aluminum—reducing energy output to propel the capsule. The material would also be embedded with sensors to monitor the capsule’s temperature and stability. This will help the company know which pods need to be repaired before it ever becomes an issue.
However, c2i is not the only group contribution composites innovation on the capsule. Back in February, a team of students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) took top honors at a recent competition at Texas A&M University to design the Hyperloop. MIT’s passenger pod design incorporated woven carbon fiber and polycarbonate sheets.
For more details on how HTT’s Vibranium will work, click here.