Paradigm Hyperloop's Feature in Memorial University’s Newsletter
July 31st, 2018
SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition 2018
Several members of the Paradigm Hyperloop team attended the third annual SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition. The competition was based on one parameter - maximum speed. Whichever team self-propelled to the highest speed in the one-mile test track at the SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, California wins. SpaceX invited the team to view the innovative work that the other student teams have been working on over the past year. It was a great opportunity to meet the other teams and discuss their designs, team dynamics, and the struggles they have been facing.
Paradigm Hyperloop would like to congratulate all of the teams that competed this year, all of the designs were unique. Out of the 1000+ teams that applied this year, 20 were invited to compete. Of these 20 teams, only 6 passed the safety tests to SpaceX’s satisfaction. Due to time constraints, 3 teams were chosen to race on the competition day based on safety and functionality.
WARR Hyperloop reached an incredible record speed of 467 km/hr to claim a first-place finish. Delft Hyperloop placed second and EPFL placed third. Paradigm Hyperloop is excited to finalize the design of a Hyperloop vehicle that will compete in this top tier next summer. Optimization is currently underway regarding our air levitated, electric motor propelled pod. This year’s pod is aimed to be a third of the weight and half the length of last competition’s pod and will surpass this year’s record speed. Testing is underway between the two universities to validate our levitation and braking systems. The extra time between competitions has enabled this testing to occur as well as in-depth improvements of the team and vehicle. Stay tuned for further updates on our contribution to the fifth mode of transportation!
July 31st, 2018
STEM Outreach Pod Tour
This past week we had the opportunity to show the Teen Circuit Youth Summer Camp around our competition II pod. The kids got the chance to experience a presentation that gave them an inside look into how Paradigm operates and the fundamentals of Hyperloop technology. We then the group through a show and tell of the pod led by Jack Chapman and Josh Elson (pictured).
So, what do kids gain by learning about Hyperloop? Will it lead them to a career in this field? It very well could. The value of touring a Hyperloop pod at age 13 is inspiration to a career in STEM, and show the next generation that they don’t have to wait until they have completed graduate school and are well into their adult years to start innovating. It can happen any time that you are willing to learn, work hard, create a design and iterate.
Now, as Hyperloop designers what do we think the optimal thing for these kids to do when they go home? In the 12 to 15 age group without any question its to start programming, and start playing with electronics (Arduino projects, etc). These types of fundamental STEM skills will put you far ahead no matter what field you enter whether it is mechanical engineering, physics, chemistry, or even medicine. This experience extends well beyond the electrical engineering and computer science fields. In order to innovate you need to be able to build instruments to validate experimentation, quickly design a controller to manipulate a product, and write code to analyze your results. Programming and completing electronics projects builds the fundamental skills you need to do this, and all fields of science and engineering could benefit more from professionals who can design their own simple test setups. We hope to have made an impression that will last with this group, and we look forward to seeing many of them in the halls at Memorial University in the years to come.
July 19th, 2018
Swagelok Training Seminar
When tackling the design and build of high pressure pneumatic systems, it is critical to implement best practice methods and keep personnel safe at all times. A leaky fitting or blow out can shut down an entire operation in an instant resulting in unnecessary down time as well as costly repairs. These challenges are met in industry every day so we are excited to be working with Swagelok to advance our second generation air supply system safely and reliably.
Swagelok recently hosted a hands on training session with the team, providing the opportunity to learn about the correct method of installing Swagelok tube fittings which will be used extensively in our new pod. It was great to chat with their engineers about Hyperloop technology and the importance of student design teams as well as learn more about tubing applications in industry.
As the evening progressed we were pleased to give the guys a tour of the pod and officially place their logo on our pod. We are extremely grateful for their support and look forward to working with Swagelok, drawing on their expertise in pneumatic systems as we continue to develop our technology!
How could you leverage the use of tube fittings in your high pressure application?
June 12th, 2018
Paradigm's Transition to an Electric Propulsion System
We have recently performed a team-wide design review of our vehicle, and one of the most substantial outcomes was a decision to switch our propulsion system from cold gas to electric-motor based. We made this change to bring us back to one of our core goals: making the most functional Hyperloop vehicle possible.
While cold gas presents the opportunity of high speed at low weights, along with unrivaled acceleration, electric motor propulsion presents a much more scalable and realistic solution in Hyperloop development. Additionally, electric motors are well developed and are becoming pervasive in modern society, whereas cold gas land propulsion is used in limited applications, and is almost entirely untested in vacuum tubes on earth.
Where the team focuses on developing a scalable and feasible Hyperloop pod that can transport passengers and goods safely, the approach that is inherently safer and more reliable was the logical choice.
June 6th, 2018