Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) CEO Dirk Ahlborn said he met with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan twice, adding that the Turkish president leaned toward and supported the possible cooperation.
Ahlborn, who announced Hyperloop, a revolutionary system technology that reaches 1,000 km per hour in a low-pressure tube and produces its own energy, for the first time in the world spoke to Doğan News Agency (DHA) during the Future of the Smart Cities Summit which he attended as the keynote speaker.
Ahlborn, who met with Deputy Minister of Science, Industry and Technology Associate Professor Hasan Ali Çelik at the summit, said with Hyperloop technology, the distance between Istanbul and Ankara could be traveled in less than 40 minutes.
"If you can go to Ankara in less than 40 minutes, would you fly?" Ahlborn said, underlining the fact that they are not competing with airlines, but working with them all over the world.
Ahlborn said there were projects tried even in the 1800s, but that all these mobility projects were unsuccessful because they were tied to a single government and company.
"Now we have created an ecosystem today. We do not just say ‘we produce, you purchase,' we are creating an ecosystem," Ahlborn said. "We are changing the mobility in collaboration with both supplier companies and governments."
Recalling that he talked to Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan twice, Ahlborn said they all support Hyperloop technology and the radical change of mobility.
"We have created a movement. This issue is not related to a tube that goes fast from point A to point B. We are also interested in the process of reaching the station," the Hyperloop CEO continued, adding that he got a chance to present the project to Erdoğan in Washington and that the Turkish president leaned toward the project.
"We need more time to commercialize this technology," Ahlborn, the CEO of the company which plans to carry the first passenger within three years, said. "We will set up our R&D [research and development] center and launch the first commercial product. At this point, our work continues for the Turkish government to make the necessary arrangements. Our aim is to commercialize the system."