This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

It’s been an exciting week for the Hyperloop. One of the companies developing the new form of transportation, based on capsules running in a vacuum at almost the speed of sound, has made two announcements, and beat a record.

On Wednesday, Virgin Hyperloop One announced that it successfully conducted a third test of its pod, reaching a new top speed of 240 mph, a 48 mph increase over its previous record of 192mph.

And yes, you read that right, it’s now the Virgin Hyperloop One. In October the company rebranded itself with the Virgin tag and this Monday it was made official — Richard Branson, billionaire CEO of the Virgin Group, was appointed Chairman of Virgin Hyperloop One. Branson replaced Shervin Pishevar, who went on a leave of absence after being accused of sexual harassment (a charge Pishevar denies.) Although Branson’s position is “non-executive,” said the company, he helped Hyperloop One secure an additional $50 million in investments.

Branson’s experience in transportation includes starting or helping launch three successful airlines (Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia and Virgin America); Virgin Rail group, which operates trains in the UK; and Virgin Galactic, which plans on bringing travelers to outer space — so helping guide a hyperloop company seems like a natural fit for him.

The speed test is a significant step because the pod is starting to reach speeds faster than many bullet trains around the world like the TGV in France or the Shinkansen in Japan, which operate with a maximum speed of 200mph in commercial service, although they have been much faster in trials.

The company shared a video showing the pod whizzing by in a test tunnel.

And those tunnels are the reason for the new speed record. In a press release the company said that it “tested a new airlock which helps transition test pods between atmospheric and vacuum conditions.” Without air resistance, the pods can reach extremely high speeds.

“The tests were conducted in a tube depressurized down to the equivalent air pressure experienced at 200,000 feet above sea level,” added the company.

Virgin beat out Elon Musk’s own pod, which reached speeds 220mph in August. Musk created the idea of the Hyperloop when he released a white paper in 2013 on the subject, proposing that the Hyperloop could reach speeds of 700 mph and opening the concept up to others for developing.

Virgin Hyperloop One said it would need its test track, which is currently .31 miles long, to be extended at least another 1.2 miles to reach those near speed-of-sound velocities.

H/T: The Verge

Featured image courtesy of Virgin Hyperloop One.

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

LIMITED TIME OFFER. Aside from the 100,000 points welcome bonus (available until 8/8/18), Amex recently made huge improvements to the Business Platinum Card, including the fact that you will now earn 50% more points on purchases of $5,000 or more, earn 5x on flights and eligible hotels at and cardholders will receive a $200 airline fee credit each year.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards® Points.
  • Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 & an extra 50,000 points after you spend an additional $15,000 all on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends 8/8/18.†
  • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on
  • Get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's 1.5 points per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. You can get up to 1 million additional points per year.
  • 35% Airline Bonus: Use Membership Rewards® Pay with Points for all or part of a flight with your selected qualifying airline, and you can get 35% of the points back, up to 500,000 bonus points per calendar year.
  • You can also receive 35% points back on all First and Business class flights, with all airlines available through American Express Travel.
  • You can enjoy access to The American Express Global Lounge Collection℠ offering access to the most lounges across the globe, when compared with other U.S. credit card offerings. As of 11/2017
  • Terms Apply
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.