Waterloop: Building the future of transportation

A student-run team is using hyperloop technology to build a pod expected to travel faster than a Boeing 747 aircraft

The University of Waterloo campus is not only home to a new flock of geese every year, but also to a diverse group of student volunteers working together to turn the vision of hyperloop into a reality.  

Hyperloop is a form of transportation technology popularized by Elon Musk which features a levitating train in a vacuum tube. Waterloop’s mission is to design and build a working, full-sized, scalable hyperloop pod by 2025 to demonstrate the future of a fully sustainable mode of transportation that can cut down travel time across Canada. 

Waterloop is a student-run design team made up of different sub-teams — mechanical, electrical, software, infrastructure, and business — allowing more than 80 student volunteers from all faculties to work together. 

Krista Porter, Guy Blumenthal, Patrick Rosenau, Tah Farooqui, Miklos Balogh, President Vivek Goel, and Drishti Jadhwani

The latest hatch: Goose V 

In May 2022, Waterloo hosted the first Canadian Hyperloop Conference and competition —welcoming 10 university teams from across the world to present their hyperloop pod designs as well as hear from industry experts about the future of hyperloop technology in Canada. 

“As a team to see how our hard work paid off was truly a uniting experience,” says Amy Darling, Waterloop’s mechanical lead. At the conference, Waterloop showcased their latest development of a hyperloop pod, Goose V, named after five iterations of research and design.   

Waterloop studentsBut one of Waterloop’s biggest feats is the construction of the first ever hyperloop test track in Canada. Now located at the Region of Waterloo International Airport, the test track allowed each team to demonstrate their pod’s full operations during the event.  

Building the hyperloop pod and working as a team was a truly memorable experience for many Waterloop students that they will carry with them long after they graduate. 

“We have a really cool startup-like environment where we are a united team working towards a singular goal,” Darling says. “Being a part of the team has helped me develop my confidence and my knowledge while learning and growing in a safe space.”