Innovating for the future

Sophomore Max Henry dreamed about getting involved in one of the innovative, research organizations on the University of Wisconsin campus as a freshman, but hadn’t found the right fit, until now. Max is a part of the engineering organization, BadgerLoop, which is working on creating a design that will revolutionize how we travel. Check out the interview with Max below to find out more about this driven Scholar and unique organization!

What is BadgerLoop?
BadgerLoop is an engineering student organization at the University of Wisconsin, with a goal to develop a single passenger prototype of Elon Musk’s Hyperloop concept, and ultimately use that vehicle to compete in the SpaceX Hyperloop Competition. In many ways BadgerLoop functions a lot like a business, in the sense that the enthusiasm behind the competition has brought together students from all areas of study. There is talent needed, among all disciplines of engineering, as well as for students interested in business for our work with industry relations, communications and fundraising.

What is your role in the organization?
I started my time with BadgerLoop doing computer aided design, as well as actually working to manufacture the prototype. Over the past few months, I have held the formal position of Fabrication Team co-lead. My responsibilities and duties included overseeing and ensuring that our designs were completed on time, offering my knowledge on manufacturing processes and serving as a leader of the team.

What got you interested in BadgerLoop?
Last year I knew I wanted to get involved in a technical engineering project, but didn’t know what project would be the bets for me. When I discovered BadgerLoop at the Engineering Student Organization Fair, I knew it would be a tremendous honor to be involved in a competition hosted by Elon Musk, one of the most revolutionary people of my generation. Additionally, having been giving the amazing opportunity to attend the University of Wisconsin through the Evans Scholarship, I wanted to make sure I was taking full advantage of all the opportunities provided at one of the most accredited research institutions in the country.

What is the Hyperloop Project?
Our BadgerLoop website offers a great explanation of what the project is: “Hyperloop is a lightning-fast transportation technology that will completely revolutionize modern transit. Since its proposal by Elon Musk in 2013, the innovative idea has evolved into a clearly influential technology of our near-future. Ultimately, the design consists of levitating pod traveling at nearly 760 miles per hour through an evacuated steel tube. The low pressure minimizes drag forces, while contact-less magnetic levitation further diminishes engird loss. The combination of these features poise Hyperloop as the new world-wide standard for high-speed transportation efficiency (”

What impact would the HyperLoop have in society?
In the most optimistic sense, the Hyperloop has the potential to become the world’s next form of superior transportation. It would be potentially faster, cheaper, safer and more energy efficient than planes, trains, automobiles and boats. Recent feasibility studies have proven that it might take a little more development before these claims come to fruition, but at the very least it will transition us into an era of further technological innovation.

Does BadgerLoop have any other events coming up?
BadgerLoop actually has an important upcoming event on Jan. 20! The BadgerLoop team will be heading out to Hawthorne, California, to finally get the chance to test our first pod in a competition! Wish us luck!

We are so proud of Max and all he has accomplished! Keep up the great work! 

If you’d like to learn more about BadgerLoop, or follow their updates, check out their Facebook page and website at: