Here’s a great article from the BBC on proposals for high-speed travel using mag-lev capsules traveling in vacuum tubes across the country or beneath the ocean — at speeds up to 2,500 miles per hour. The original theoretical work goes back generations and the environmental effects are huge, with the fuel usage being far below a what even the most fuel efficient trains of today can deliver.
Daryl Oster (who holds the patent on one promising system) believes we could be using ETT for world travel in less than 10 years, with the most attractive routes between major cities. Ideally these would be separated by dry, flat, unpopulated terrain, where the ground doesn’t freeze. He believes India and China are currently the most promising looking places for what he modestly calls “space travel on Earth”.
Imagine being able to go from San Francisco to New York in less than 45 minutes, or from Dallas to Mumbai in a couple of hours. And this isn’t just science fiction. A Florida company called ET3 has already sold six licenses to China and other countries, who are exploring putting the idea into production.