Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group, meets the Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray in Mumbai

Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Group, met Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray in Mumbai on Friday, December 13 to discuss the privately-funded Pune-Mumbai hyperloop project. The discussion reflected on the influx of foreign investments, the potential to create new jobs for locals and the introduction of new technology to the Indian State of Maharashtra.

I've always been so inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit of the Indian people. I'm so excited that they've embraced the hyperloop concept and share our vision of creating new and sustainable transportation for the region - Richard Branson, Virgin group

World's first hyperloop 

Inside Hyperloop tubes
Inside Hyperloop tubesVHO

Virgin Hyperloop One has committed to working with the government to create the world's first hyperloop transport project in Maharashtra and are encouraged by the response from the new government.

Officials from the Thackeray's Office said, "Richard Branson had a positive meeting with the CM of Maharashtra, where he requested the Chief Minister to expedite the project. Branson highlighted the benefits of the project and reflected on Maharashtra's unique role in the future of technology development."

The CM acknowledged that the project is important for Maharashtra. While the meeting did not involve major decision-making, the CM mentioned that the appropriate processes will be executed to facilitate the negotiation.

We are encouraged by today's meeting and look forward to working with the State of Maharashtra in progressing the hyperloop project.  Harj Dhaliwal, Managing Director – Middle East & India, Virgin Hyperloop One.

What is hyperloop & how does it work?

Hyperloop One is closer to reality
Hyperloop One is closer to realityVHO

Hyperloop transportation system is deemed as the future of transport, helping people move from one place to another in the quickest possible way.

  • Hyperloop allows people to travel in capsules
  • Moves at high speeds inside low-pressure tube propelled by electromagnetic motors.
  • Hyperloop, once functional, can travel at a record speed of up to 760mph (which is roughly about 1,220 kmph).
  • Low energy consumed and does not get affected by weather or earthquakes.
  • zero direct emissions.

Other big names include Elon Musk's The Boring Company, which is working on a line between Washington DC and New York. Hardt Hyperloop is also working to connect Mexico City to Guadalajara. It's only a matter of time before we witness the transportation history takes a huge turn.

The Mumbai-Pune Hyperloop project

Hyperloop network from the outside
Hyperloop network from the outsideVHO

The Mumbai-Pune hyperloop project puts India at the forefront of hyperloop infrastructure. Virgin Hyperloop One is one of the few companies that are invested in the future of transportation. VHO already has projects underway in India alongside other countries, including the US, UAE and KSA.

"This is history in the making," Walder said in August. "The race is on to host the first hyperloop transportation system in the world, and today's announcement puts India firmly in the lead.

VHO is working on an 11.8km demonstration track, and upon successfully completing this it will continue with phase 2 to build to 100km track connecting Mumbai and Pune. Once completed, people will be able to transit between Mumbai and Pune in less than 30 minutes.