Elon Musk or the real life Iron Man as he is fondly known, just shared another futuristic concept that will most definitely blow your mind. The man who reduced the cost of flying to the International Space Station by almost 90%, now wants to drastically reduce travel time on the roads with revolutionary high-speed tunnels and cars that can “skate.”
Musk showcased this concept video at at a Ted conference held in Vancouver on Sunday. The video showcases a network of tunnels that will help commuters evade traffic situations. The concept of the tunnels was born at The Boring Company, founded by Musk in late 2016. The Tesla founder wants to create a 3D transportation network wherein deep tunnels assist in keeping high volumes of traffic at bay.
The concept video of the proposed network of super tunnels shows a car finding a platform on the side of a road. The car then parks on the platform called a “car skate.” The skate doubles up as an elevator and takes the car to an underground level of tunnels. Each individual car skate acts like a pod and once in the tunnel, transports a car through the network of tunnels at speeds of 200 Km/h.
The Boring Company is already building a 30 foot wide, 50 foot long, and 15 foot deep "test trench" on the SpaceX office premises, where the company does not have need to secure permissions for such an experiment. Musk wants to dig up multi-layer tunnels in cities and said, “There’s no real limit to how many levels of tunnels you can have.” He added that, “The deepest mines are much deeper than the tallest buildings are tall.”
However, details of Musk’s tunneling endeavours are not so clear as of now. The serial entrepreneur said that the concept of these tunnels is being worked upon by interns and part-time employees. Musk himself admitted that he spends as little as two to three percent of his time on The Boring Company. “We bought some second hand machinery. It’s kind of puttering along but making good progress,” he said. In his typical fashion Musk added, “We have a pet snail named Gary. Gary is capable of currently going 14 times faster than a tunnel boring machine. We want to beat Gary. He’s not a patient little fellow, that will be victory. Victory will be beating the snail.”