Construction of a Hyperloop transportation system (proposed by American businessman Elon Musk) connecting Moscow and St. Petersburg will be significantly cheaper than an ordinary high-speed railroad, or RUR 1.18 trillion ($18.5 bln) against RUR 1.5 trillion ($23.5 bln), found experts of the Institute of Natural Monopoly Studies (IPEM), Kommersant reports.
In a Hyperloop, a train car (a capsule) is moving along the track through a vacuum tube which allows accelerating the vehicle up to 1,200 kmh, or about 50% faster than the speed of passenger planes.
The system was proposed by Elon Musk; there are no successful projects yet and they are not expected until 2022. Russia planned to build a short Hyperloop for freight transportation to China but the project has not been finished yet.
With all the advantages of Elon Musk’s technology, passenger fare (even if the state subsidizes the initiative) will be over RUR 16,000 one way. The service will therefore be available only to the wealthiest passengers travelling between the two cities. This being said, for the project to pay off, the railroad needs to be used by about 5% of Russia’s richest people.