WHY THIS MATTERS IN BRIEF
Tunnelling is often a complex and expensive process but musk has sped up the process by making the tunnels smaller, and now he wants to revolutionise urban transportation.
After months of wondering what was going on beneath their feet outsiders are about to get a look at the transportation tunnels being dug by Elon Musk’s Boring Company. The billionaire Musk has invited the world’s media to a Boring Company event being held at the company’s headquarters in Hawthorne, the Los Angeles suburb that’s also home to the SpaceX rocket factory and Tesla’s electric car design studio. Musk is CEO of both SpaceX and Tesla.
At the event it’s widely expected that Musk is expected to show off one of the company’s first tunnel segments that’s an offshoot of the hyperloop concept, a Mach 1 train in a vacuum tube, or in this case tunnel, that he and others have been promoting for the past few years. At very least, it’s believed that the event will show how cars can be put on platforms and whisked through an underground tube at speeds of up to 150mph as a way of avoiding freeway congestion that plagues the area. And at a maximum it’s believed that the tunnels could be configured in line with the hyperloop concept, acting like pneumatic tubes below office buildings that push the futuristic trains at insane speeds.
Musk is known for a wide range of interests that have become lucrative businesses. SpaceX has become a successful low-cost launcher of rockets. Tesla is wowing the automotive world with its electric cars. The home rooftop solar business formerly known as SolarCity has been folded into Tesla.
But frustrated by Los Angeles’ notoriously sluggish traffic, Musk took an interest in tunnelling. He obtained a tunnelling machine a little while ago and started digging, hoping to find ways the lower the costs of boring holes in the ground, which he did by decreasing the diameter of the tunnels by around 20 percent. And now that Musk has a demonstration tunnel in Hawthorne, it’s time to see what comes next. A plan to dig a tunnel under the San Diego Freeway, Interstate 405, on Los Angeles’ west side, was shelved after encountering local opposition, but the Boring Company is already talking about a tunnel to Dodger Stadium which will run about 3.6 miles in length.