Three European cities might soon be connected by a futuristic new 1,126-km/h transit system.

Travel time between three European cities could be cut considerably if a 1,126 km-per-hour transportation system becomes reality.
The high-speed “hyperloop,” an ultra-high-speed transportation system first proposed by famed Tesla and SpaceX entrepreneur Elon Musk, might see its first practical implementation as a link between the European cities of Vienna, Bratislava and Budapest, reports RT.com. A deal between Slovakia and Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) was signed in March and testing will begin in 2020.

With the system, passengers would be driven through a low-friction vacuum tunnel in electrically driven pods reaching up 1,126 kilometres an hour. The 78-kilometre trip between Vienna and Bratislava, currently about an hour-long trip by train, would take about eight minutes; the 200-km journey from Bratislava to Budapest would take less than 18 minutes.

“Hyperloop in Europe would cut distances substantially and network cities in unprecedented ways,” said Slovakian minister of economy Vazil Hudak. “A transportation system of this kind would redefine the concept of commuting and boost cross-border cooperation in Europe.”

This is the first time a hyperloop network has been proposed outside the US. In January 2016, a team of MIT engineers and students won a competition pitting them against 1,000 rival groups to test capsule prototypes at a hyperloop test track to be built next to the SpaceX headquarters in California.  

Slovakia is one of many countries from the former Soviet bloc that are taking a leading-edge approach to their development.“Slovakia is a technological leader in the automotive, material science and energy industries, many of the areas that are integral to the Hyperloop system,” said HTT’s CEO, Dirk Ahlborn, in an interview with RT.com.