Hyperloop poses no threat to aviation industry yet, says Boeing exec

Hyperloop is often billed as a cost-effective and environmentally friendly future alternative to short-haul air travel

Randy Tinseth, vice president of marketing for Boeing Commercial Airplanes. Courtesy: KARYN NISHIMURA/AFP/Getty Images

Hyperloop technology is unlikely to present any short-term threat to the aerospace sector, according to Randy Tinseth, vice president of marketing for Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

The still-in-development hyperloop system – which is being developed by several firms around the world – is often billed as a “greener” and cheaper alternative to short-haul air transport, at potentially similar speeds.

Speaking to reporters at the recent Dubai Airshow on Sunday, Tinseth said that he did not believe that hyperloop would represent competition for aircraft manufacturers anytime soon.

“Probably not in my lifetime,” he said. “I live in Seattle. It took 13 years for them to develop and build a third runway at the airport. Can you imagine the environmental impact that would be [required] to build a hyperloop that goes several hundred miles?”

Tinseth added that he believes that hyperloop is “potentially a viable technology” that could “compete, at some time.”

“But I think at this point the challenges are greater than the opportunity,” he said. “We’ll just have to see how that works out.”

In an interview with Arabian Business earlier this year, Jay Walder, the CEO of the Los Angeles-based Virgin Hyperloop One (VHO), said that the hyperloop system the firm is developing will be 5 to 10 times more energy-efficient than an airplane.

According to Boeing, 44,000 new airplanes will be needed over the next 20 years, creating $16 trillion in commercial aviation value.

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