“I’ve seen the future and it will be. I’ve seen the future and it works,” maybe more than just lyrics from a song by Prince. The technology referred to as magnetic levitation (“maglev”) allows for frictionless travel at high speeds. Maglev is a relatively new transportation technology in which one object, a train per se, floats above another using magnets. Magnetic fields are used to pull and push the suspended object safely at speeds of 270 to 300 miles-per-hour or higher. The highest recorded speed of a maglev train is 581 km/h (361 mph), achieved in Japan in 2003.
Imagine using maglev technology to travel in enclosed capsules through vacuum tubes. There will be little to no resistance at all. It will be akin to traveling in space without leaving the ground. It has been estimated that a capsule could reach speeds of 4,000 miles per hour within 3 minutes.