30 teams will compete to build the pod of the future.
The foundations of a potentially new type of transportation are being laid this weekend a the first SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition.
The brain child of Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk, the Hyperloop concept is basically a pneumatic tube that accelerates a transport "pod" through a vacuum. Because there is little to no air resistance, the pod can theoretically travel at 700 mph over hundreds of miles.
Musk has stated that he is too busy with his existing companies to develop the Hyperloop himself. As a result, he released development to the public and let SpaceX host an open competition.
The contest will host 30 teams, drawn from a pool of more than 1,200 applicants, at SpaceX's Hawthorne, California headquarters. Many of the contestant teams are from universities, including MIT, RMIT, Virginia Tech, University of Washington, and UC Irvine. However, there are also teams consisting of a coalition of universities, groups of independent engineers from various countries, and even one high school team from Houston, Texas. Full a rundown of the competing teams, check out Business Insider.
While this weekend's competition focuses on pod design, this summer a second competition will focus on pod speed.