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Elon Musk’s idea will transform labor markets: CEO

A super-speed rail line lauded by Tesla Motors chief Elon Musk could transform labor markets around the world, according to the CEO of Hyperloop Tech.

The company is just one startup that is working on the concept of Hyperloop, which plans to take passengers from San Francisco to Los Angeles in 30 minutes.


Rendering of a hyperloop capsule being docked.
Source: Hyperloop Technologies
Rendering of a hyperloop capsule being docked.

Speaking to CNBC at the Web Summit in Dublin, its CEO Rob Lloyd – who is a former president at Cisco – said governments will jump on the Hyperloop bandwagon once they see the positive impacts the project could have on their economies.

"We can actually see areas of the world that just can clearly understand the economic advantage of Hyperloop. They can see how labor markets could change, how economic efficiency could be driven, and we expect that very top level support for Hyperloop will emerge," he explained.

Hyperloop's conceptual design consists of a number of pods, carrying either people or freight, shooting through a low-pressure tube with the help of an electric motor. The pods would be elevated, levitating off the bottom off the track, nixing the need for wheels that increase friction and reduce speed. Ultimately, it would help transport goods nearly as fast as the speed of sound.

"You can move people or goods in excess of 700 miles an hour, (and) you can move them on demand," Lloyd told CNBC.

The idea was first put forward by Elon Musk in 2013, and while he and his companies — SpaceX and Tesla — aren't affiliated or developing the Hyperloop themselves, they've lent moral support and a helping hand in publicizing the project.

"The interest that we see coming in from around the world, about the applications of Hyperloop is just astounding. So there's a global movement that seems to be happening that says we want something different, and we believe Hyperloop can be part of the solution in the future," Lloyd said.

The company is now preparing to test the propulsion system and will begin work on a test track in 2016.