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Developing sensors for the Hyperloop

Find out how Althen is involved in the development of the next generation of transportation.

Since 2015 SpaceX, a company of Tesla´s CEO Elon Musk, organizes the Hyperloop Pod Competition to accelerate the development of the Hyperloop concept: a high-speed transportation system using near-vacuum tubes in which pressurized vehicles travel. Due to low air resistance in the tubes, the vehicles can travel with speeds of over 1000 km/h while being more energy efficient, environmentally friendly, and convenient than airplanes.

Student teams around the globe are challenged to design and build a half-sized Hyperloop pod, to travel through a 1.2 km low pressure tube, built by SpaceX in California.

TU Delft joins the competition

In 2016 a team of students from the Delft University of Technology founded Delft Hyperloop, to design and build one of the first Hyperloop pods ever. The students reach out to several companies to find sponsors who can help them with materials and advise and ask Althen to become their sensor sponsor. 

We offer the Delft Hyperloop team our expertise and we sponsor the project with our sensors. At first we focus on measuring the position of the Hyperloop-pod relative to the maglev track over which the pod hovers.

Later in the process we discover that the team could use some more expertise and some more sensors. Eventually we help design various sensors into the Hyperloop project: from high speed laser sensors, draw wire sensors and acceleration sensors.

Hyperloop Laser Sensors

  • Measurement of the Hyperloop pod’s position relatively to the maglev track over which the pod hovers.
  • Measurement of the lateral position of the chassis.
  • Validation of the vehicle model.
  • The tuning of the suspension.

Hyperloop Draw Wire Sensors

  • Used for the position of the brake and for the control of the brake system.

Hyperloop Acceleration Sensors

  • State system controller. In which mode is the Hyperloop vehicle? In the acceleration, coasting, emergency or braking mode?
  • Control of the brakes (do I brake quickly enough?)

Althen Sponsor Partner of TU Delft 

Althen and the TU Delft grow a special relationship over years. As the sensor specialist we find it very important to stay up to date when it comes to the latest developments and projects of the University. We share our expertise and experience with them and they keep us in the loop when it comes to new developments.

Atlas Hyperloop Reveal

Delft Hyperloop wins the first competition

Delft Hyperloop wins the first competition based on the best overall design and performance. Out of 2000 competing teams, Delft Hyperloop has won the overall first prize!

Althen remains the sensor partner of the Delft Hyperloop Team - now called Atlas01 - for the 2018 edition, which was held in the summer of 2018. The TU Delft teams wins the second prize.

Watch the video for the Hyperloop Atlas01 reveal.

HARDT - The future of transportation

The competition is only the beginning. The Hyperloop challenge is broadcasted all around the world, several large companies and the government are interested in this Hyperloop as transportation method of the future. A couple of Delft Hyperloop students decide to develop this fifth transportation method even further and start the company HARDT.

With the large investments they aim to present us this new way of traveling in the near future. With some help from several partners and Althen as their sensor partner we believe that this dream will become a reality within 5 years.

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