Virgin Hyperloop One and Saudi Arabia to build

Published: Tuesday, August 13, 2019

LOS ANGELES: Virgin Hyperloop One is building the world’s first long-range test track for hyperloop track, a research and development center and a hyperloop manufacturing facility north of Jeddah as part of its partnership agreement with Saudi Arabia’s Economic City Authority (ECA), the companies announced.

The project, which involves building a 35-km hyperloop track, could cut travel time between Jeddah and Riyadh to just 76 minutes from the current over 10 hours and just 48 minutes to the nearby Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (currently 8.5 hours), is an impetus to the Kingdom’s goal of developing Saudi as the Silicon Valley of the Desert under Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman’s Vision 2030.

Virgin Hyperloop One’s technology features depressurized tubes that carry on-demand passenger or cargo “pods” at speeds up to 1080 kilometers per hour. It’s success in Saudi positions the country as the gateway to the Middle East, Europe and Asia for both freight and passenger movement.

The study will focus on King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), located 100 kilometers north of the Red Sea port of Jeddah. “Our partnership with Virgin Hyperloop One is a matter of pride for us and all of Saudi Arabia,” said Saudi ECA Secretary General Mohanud A. Helal who went to Los Angeles to seal the

“As we continue to help deliver the strategic pillars of Vision 2030, technology transfer and high-tech job creation opportunities that this relationship will bring are fundamental to our progress as a nation and our efforts to create opportunities for our bright young people.

Having hyperloop at King Abdullah Economic City is going to act as a catalyst for a Saudi Silicon Valley effect and galvanize our software development, high technology research, and manufacturing industries,” he added.

In parallel to the implementation of the Study, Prince Mohammad bin Salman College of Business and Entrepreneurship will collaborate on the creation and publication of an academic paper outlining the economic impact of a Hyperloop Center of Excellence in KAEC.

Additionally, experts from the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) will visit the Virgin Hyperloop One testing facility in Nevada to conduct a technical review, followed by the publication of an academic paper.

“I look forward to this collaboration with our visionary partners in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to turn this technology into a mass transportation solution,” said Jay Walder, CEO, Virgin Hyperloop One.