The corridor between Los Angeles and San Francisco is one of the most traveled corridors in the American West, making the commute between the two cities a daunting task. Currently, there are three methods of transportation to move between these two metropolitan areas: roadways, air and rail. In 2013, there was a proposition made by Elon Musk, the CEO of SpaceX, PayPal and Tesla, to build a low pressure tube to transport passengers and cargo between these epicenters.
Calling back to the entrepreneurial spirit that has propelled Elon through his career, he turned his brainchild into a competition, calling upon university students to design, build and test a prototype. This train is designed to carry passengers, cargo and vehicles at a proposed trip time of about 35 minutes.
In the spring of 2016, the University of Colorado at Denver designed an entry to the competition and was among the 30 teams that were selected to compete. There are four core members of the team, making this the smallest group to submit an entry; however their focus on efficiency and safety has piqued the interest of the engineers who have reviewed their designs.