From driving to the nearest shop to get some essentials, commuting to work by train or flying to your dream holiday destination, getting around the world has never been easier in 2019.
In the last 200 years especially, transport has completely transformed. With the first steam railway built in 1804, the first credited automobile created by Karl Benz in Germany in 1885-1886, to the first powered aircraft in 1903 and even the first ever rocket that reached space in 1942. It is clear that the industry has made leaps and bounds over the last 200 years.
But what will transport look like by the end of the 21st century?
The last few decades has truly seen the birth of a digital age, where technology has become entwined and embedded into our society, used both at work and also in our personal lives. All industries have been impacted by this technological revolution, including transport, with the world now witnessing self-driving cars, drones that can deliver goods to your doorstep, and billionaires who are hoping to transport humans to Mars in the next couple of decades.
But what are the most exciting changes set to happen in the transportation industry and impact how the world gets around as a result? RS Components asked two of the teams competing in 2019’s SpaceX sponsored Hyperloop Pod Competition how they envisage these changes in transport looking.
Getting around the world, much, much faster
The fastest way humans can travel between countries is currently by aeroplane, with the average commercial plane speed hitting an impressive 460-575 mph. But as technology becomes more advanced, the speed at which we can travel will increase as well. By 2030, it is predicted that the world’s first Hyperloop could be in place, propelling passengers around the world at a staggering speed of approximately 760 mph. Travelling at this speed would mean it would take just over 4.5 hours to travel from London to New York City.
The future of transport is green
Governments are currently undergoing huge policy changes to ensure cars become emission free over the next two decades, by banning petrol and diesel cars due to the air pollution problems they cause. By 2030 it is predicted that all ground transport, including cars, buses and trains will be driven by renewable energies to tackle this global issue.
In the same year aeroplanes will have no windows, but rather the fuselage will be a big screen, making the aircraft lighter as a result which will mean less fuel is being burnt.
Drive through the skies
Global populations are expected to reach 9.8 billion by 2050. At the same time, the UK population is expected to exceed 70 million by 2030, growing by a further 7 million to reach 77 million by 2050.
This huge growth in population around the world and across the UK will lead to a huge increase in the number of people using roads and other systems of transport as they look to commute for work or leisure.
Whilst the numbers of people travelling will increase, the capacity of routes currently available are unlikely to keep pace, due to the road and underground systems restricted in the routes and numbers they can hold. As such, humans will need to look for alternative transport routes.
For these reasons, the Irish SpaceX Hyperloop pod competition team, Éirloop, have predicted that humans will be ‘driving in the sky’ where far more space can be found than on roads or underground. This will allow for higher volumes of people to travel and at higher speeds, therefore cutting travel times.
Travel to Space
Commercial travel to space is an immensely exciting talking point in 2019, with billionaires such as Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson all working to get people into outer space and even to Mars over the next couple of decades. But by 2100, it is expected that space travel will be taking place via Hyperloop, which will transport passengers to other colonies outside of Earth.
Are you ready for the next century of transport?