The Boring Company has been coming out of hibernation in the past week. Not only has it received approval to begin the tunneling process underneath of Los Angeles, but now people who refer enough friends to purchase a new Tesla will even get the opportunity to pilot a tunnel boring machine. Today, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has begun to post a few teasers of the tunnel in action, featuring a Model S.
Godot, the tunnel-digging boring machine owned by The Boring Company, digs a pretty big hole. Albeit a slow process, the tunnel itself is only wide enough to accommodate a single car. A driver can't be expected to travel at high speeds, and although autopilot works well, the car can't actually travel as fast as Musk wants - instead a cart on a rail track will have to do. This is one of the reasons why the electric sled concept is so crucial in Musk's plan to deploy the underground tunnel.
Its initial entry at SpaceX is already dug, as well as around 160 feet of tunnel underneath of the parking lot, extending to the edge of the property. Next, a two-mile stretch will be dug 44 feet underneath of 120th Street, extending all the way from SpaceX to Hawthorne Boulevard. Though these underground tunnels won't be as impressive in speed when compared the the hyperloop, Musk has flirted with the idea of reducing pressure in the tunnels, similar to how the hyperloop will operate.
Though a bit small, this WARR pod is exactly the type of mass-transit system that is expected to make long-range transit possible in minimal time. It is speculated that under ideal conditions in the hyperloop, vehicles could safely travel up to 800 miles per hour, which is about 200 MPH faster than the cruising speed of a Boeing 747. Such is demonstrated by the group of German students in the video Elon Musk posted on Instagram below when they achieved a speed of 201 miles per hour using their concept.
Even though engineers are still working to perfect a technology that hasn't been used to transport another person, it's quickly transitioning from theoretical research to actual viable product in a quick manner. Once perfected, Musk will begin to build two hyperloops - one around Los Angeles, and one from New York to Washington D.C. - something which he has already had verbal approval to begin. For now, we'll have to watch the model cars have all the fun.