Elon Musk’s Hyperloop dream has sparked the imaginations of entrepreneurs and engineers around the world.
And now the futuristic mode of transportation is even beginning to shape college curricula.
Purdue University says it is offering its first ever Hyperloop Design class.
The course, which began on Tuesday, requires students to design a passenger capsule for the transportation system that can travel at nearly sonic speeds in a vacuum tube.
The class is a junior/senior level course that can be taken as technical elective or area elective.
Alina Alexeenko, an associate professor at the school of Aero & Astronautics at Purdue, told Tech Insider in an email that the class is cross-listed between three engineering schools at Purdue: Aero & Astro, Mechanical, and Industrial.
Musk announced earlier this summer that his company SpaceX will host a Hyperloop pod competition next year to find the best design for a passenger capsule for the proposed transportation system. The contest is aimed at university students and independent engineers — it’s already attracted more than 1,200 entrants.
The design of Purdue’s class, “AAE/IE/ 490: Hyperloop Design,” is based off SpaceX’s contest requirements.
Alexeenko, who is part of the staff teaching the course, said the class plans on participating in the SpaceX competition, but it’s still a class with its own learning objectives.
According to the class page, there are currently 54 students currently enrolled in the course.
Purdue is not the first university to incorporate the Hyperloop into coursework, however. Engineering students at the University of Illinois have been working on a Hyperloop prototype for the last two years, albeit their focus was on constructing a functioning miniature model.
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