Leister Member of the EuroTube Project

Leister Insight21 Sept 2023

The EuroTube Foundation and Leister are looking forward to a groundbreaking collaboration. Both parties have made a partnership commitment to co-develop the sealing concept of EuroTube's concrete tubes. This in the context of the development of the Hyperloop test facility DemoTube in Dübendorf (Switzerland).

Author: Gregor Studer, Manager Marketing Services, Leister Technologies AG, Switzerland

Images: © EuroTube Foundation

Researching the Mobility of the Future.

To ensure the mobility of the future, we are faced with major challenges. The aim is to transport passengers and goods quickly, efficiently and safely. We also want to avoid pollutant emissions in order to protect the environment and climate. To achieve these ambitious goals, Switzerland, together with the EuroTube Foundation, has established its own research facility for hyperloop infrastructure in Dübendorf. This is because the hyperloop infrastructure has the potential to revolutionize our transportation system.

What is Hyperloop?

Hyperloop is the concept for a high-speed transportation system in which magnetic levitation trains travel in vacuum tubes virtually friction-free. This transportation system was first proposed in 2013 by Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, to move people and goods quickly, efficiently and in an environmentally friendly way. The hyperloop system enables speeds of more than 900 km/h to be reached with low energy requirements. This means traveling at the speed of an airplane, but with the comfort and environmental impact of a train.

Since the unveiling of the concept, several companies worldwide have begun conducting feasibility studies and prototypes.

First Complete Technology Demonstrator DemoTube in Dübendorf

The DemoTube on the test site behind the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA*) in Dübendorf will be 120 m long. It serves as a test facility for all systems necessary for the hyperloop. Here, safety systems, vacuum compatibility, entry via an airlock and low-speed travel in a vacuum are tested under near-real conditions. Research groups and universities use the DemoTube for research work and electrical and mechanical product testing.

(*EMPA is a Swiss research institute for application-oriented materials science and technology. It has three locations – Dübendorf, St. Gallen and Thun.)

Support from Leading Swiss and European Industry Stakeholders

In 2020, EuroTube was recognized by the Swiss government as a research institute of national importance and has since counted on the support of leading Swiss and European research and industry stakeholders.

Within the scope of the commitment made with Leister, the main focus is on sealing the concrete pipe with plastic liners. To this end, Leister provides technical support and equipment for the DemoTube hyperloop test track. Leister engineers Mauritz Lustenberger (R&D) and Reto Britschgi (Plastic Fabrication Product Manager) provide the scientists with theoretical knowledge about the various welding processes and carry out test welds. To join the casing to the concrete pipe and weld it tight, Leister provides extruders from the WELDPLAST S2 TPO product line and the UNDRIVE 500 automatic welding machine, as well as a variety of manual welding devices.

Leister Stands for Sustainability and Innovative Technologies

EuroTube and Leister are confident that their cooperation will help drive EuroTube’s groundbreaking research and development work in vacuum transport technology.

Bruno von Wyl, CTO and member of the Executive Committee of Leister Group, says: “At Leister, we have been committed to sustainable solutions that reduce environmental impact for decades. Leister stands for innovative technologies, which are continuously further developed. Leister is pleased to support this exciting global project and we look forward to working on other major projects in the future for the implementation of test facilities.”

Learn more about EuroTube.