Steel manufacturers Tata Steel in Europe and South Korea-based POSCO will collaborate to develop and test steels and tube designs.

The steel concepts will be used to create a hyperloop, which is a tube sufficient to carry a passenger or freight pod that can travel at speeds exceeding 1,000kmh while using minimal energy.

Steel is an important commodity in developing the infrastructure required for the hyperloop, including the tubes.

When compared with regular tubes, the giant steel tubes needed for the hyperloop have several features. For instance, they need to enable the passenger or freight vehicle inside to travel in a low-pressure environment, where air is removed to minimise resistance and energy usage.

The two firms will develop quality steel grades, which are customised for large diameter tubes of up to 3.5m, and incorporate their efforts in research on new tube concepts and designs.

Tata Steel chief technical officer Ernst Hoogenes said: “Globally, hyperloops hold a lot of potential for the future of high-speed sustainable transport and these are very exciting projects. This is an important part of our ambitions towards decarbonisation.

“We are delighted to join forces with POSCO. Pooling our joint technical expertise will enable us to scale up our innovation efforts and give our customers the cutting-edge products they need to be successful.”

POSCO technical research laboratories head Dr Duk-Lak Lee said: “POSCO has been conducting hyperloop related research such as feasibility, design and structural optimisation of various types of steel tubes for more than ten years, and has developed optimal steel materials and design solutions in terms of structural stability and economic efficiency. This will contribute to realising hyperloop as the future eco-friendly transportation method.”

Meanwhile, the National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) and Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) have signed an MoU to develop platform screen doors for mass rapid transit systems, regional rapid transit systems, and high-speed trains in India.

These screen doors will act as a safety barrier between passengers on the platform and the train and track.