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The Boring Company has received a written permit to begin Hyperloop excavation in Washington,...

By Polycount · 17 replies
Feb 19, 2018
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  1. Elon Musk has been known to have the occasional wild idea. In 2016, he decided to start the Boring Company after expressing his frustrations with traffic jams on Twitter. Though Musk recently announced and sold a controversial flamethrower under the Boring Company brand, the company's end goals lie in the creation of "Hyperloops."

    Hyperloops will be massive tubes stretching between major cities with the ability to transfer individuals and vehicles at around 800 mph. This may seem like an impossible goal but Musk and the Boring Company have just taken a major step towards achieving it.

    According to the Washington Post, the Boring Company now has a written permit to begin excavating space for a Hyperloop in Washington, DC on 53 New York Avenue. Though this permit is still "early, and vague," it still marks a major milestone for Musk's company.

    "We're just beginning, in the mayor's office, our conversation to get an understanding of what the general vision is for Hyperloop," said DC Mayor Muriel Bowser's Chief of Staff, John Falcicchio. "We're open to the concept of moving people around the region more efficiently."

    The Boring Company hopes the total Hyperloop transit time between the two major cities will clock in at a mere 29 minutes.

    The Hyperloop in question doesn't have an official title yet but it's currently set to extend between DC and New York City. The Boring Company hopes the total Hyperloop transit time between the two major cities will clock in at a mere 29 minutes.

    Although the creation of the Hyperloops themselves will certainly be expensive and time-consuming, the biggest hurdles the company will face are likely to be regulatory ones. Getting political leaders across the country onboard with the Hyperloop project will be no small task. As such, it's nice to see some movement on that front, even if it's only on a small scale for now.

    Permalink to story.

  2. LeoLancaster

    LeoLancaster TS Rookie

    Elon Musk is the Elon Musk of this generation. There's no other way to put it.
    Stark and Whitefyre like this.
  3. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 4,122   +2,544

    Well, this is really boring.
    Whitefyre likes this.
  4. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,517   +408

    Assuming it ever actually gets completed... Those trips are probably going to be expensive as siiiiin, kinda like the Concorde. But slower. In a tube. Still hella cool though. Prices though not because the cost of operation, but the cost of construction, probably.
  5. kapital98

    kapital98 TS Maniac Posts: 309   +235

    That's like saying regular subway travel is expensive as sin. In this situation, Musk would have no other competitor in the market and have a superior product (in speed and convenience) than air travel flight. Air travel is still the #1 way for business people to jump between NYC and DC.

    If successful, this would be extremely profitable. More because of demand than price gouging. Conventional forms of transportation would put somewhat of a cap on what he could charge. This is all assuming he kept the company. Once it becomes profitable he could sell it for almost any amount he wanted.
    Stark likes this.
  6. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TS Evangelist Posts: 820   +334

    Really? Most of the guys I know hopping into NYC on a frequent basis take accela. By the time you get to the air port (since none of them are downtown) get through check in and security get to your gate, board, and takeoff you have already spent 1-2 hours just trying to get out of DC. Sure the flights 35-40 min, then you gotta land, get a ride into downtown. Or you can hop onto the train in downtown (Union and Penn are both very well located) ride the train for 2 and half hours and walla your in downtown DC/NYC, with connections to the rest of the city at the same station. I'm looking forward to what amtrak is doing to the NEC by 2025 there should be some really quick lines running through there, with the new train and the line improvements might actually have the train keep up speeds around 125-150MPH.
    Lionvibez likes this.
  7. senketsu

    senketsu TS Guru Posts: 819   +549

    When we're talking real money, for me 'early' and 'vague' don't really cut it. I'm all for faster transit though.
  8. skipmichael

    skipmichael TS Enthusiast Posts: 46   +19

    Levitating monorail is the answer. This is stupid.
  9. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,410   +569

    Ya no!
  10. NicktheWVAHick

    NicktheWVAHick TS Addict Posts: 136   +107

    I hope they are talking to the MagLev engineers who are starting construction off the B-W Parkway. Otherwise there is likely to be a MOFAC “mother of all collisions”.
  11. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 3,070   +1,548

    The only collision would be that Musk's underground hyperloop will likely cost far more to build than the MagLEV, and the MagLEV will likely be finished before Musk gets anywhere. Even if Musk does finish, he will have quite the competition in the MagLEV which would, perhaps, sink this incarnation of the hyperloop.
  12. Urgelt

    Urgelt TS Enthusiast Posts: 66   +37

    Permitting isn't the only vague thing about this project - though it's *very* vague. I can't even guess how many federal, state and local authorities will be involved in creating a permitted corridor for this project.

    Hyperloop itself is vague, too - exactly what will be constructed? How will people get on and off? How will partial vacuum be maintained? What happens if there's an earthquake or a mechanical malfunction? Will passengers only use the loop from D.C. to NYC, or will there be sleds for vehicles?

    I don't think anyone, the Boring Company included, knows exactly what will end up taking shape for this Hyperloop run, assuming permitting and funding are solved problems. There's a tremendous lot of engineering and testing to do.

    Maybe that's okay.

    Elon Musk is an unusual entrepeneur: he not only tolerates failure, he regards failure as the method by which his engineers perfect technologies. So I think we can expect to see a lot of mid-course corrections as the Boring Company hones in on a concept that's workable.

    If there is one.
  13. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 10,779   +4,591

    I do believe that is the way R&D goes for every company. The only question is how much tolerance they are willing to permit.
  14. Urgelt

    Urgelt TS Enthusiast Posts: 66   +37

    If CEOs who can tolerate failure as well as Musk were common, we'd have seen those CEOs charging into the automotive business, the rocketry business, and yes, the tunnel-boring business, where reinventing what came before and setting aspirational goals is exceedingly risky. Where are they?
  15. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,586   +274

    Of course things are vague when you don't try to find the information. It's not that hard to find this vision video or the Boring Company FAQ, which answer several of your questions.
  16. Urgelt

    Urgelt TS Enthusiast Posts: 66   +37

    Are you really that uncritical? I've seen the video and visited the site. You have, too, obviously. How is it possible that you are mistaking a mission statement with an engineering design?

    Those sources are the very *definition* of vague.
  17. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,586   +274

    Nah. I think it was the other way round, and I was just too critical of your post. I agree, it's not clear how this particular project will end up looking. That said, I do feel that there's a difference between 'doesn't know exactly' and 'doesn't know'. I'm sure they have a good idea where they want to go, and probably also alternatives in case what they want to do can't be done. Musk ain't dumb. If he didn't think this can be done, and in a cost effective way, he likely wouldn't do it. That of course doesn't mean that it'd turn out the way he envisioned it, but I'm sure he's done (or rather, had people do) enough research to justify that position.
  18. Urgelt

    Urgelt TS Enthusiast Posts: 66   +37

    I'd like you to understand something about my initial comment: I wasn't being critical of Musk or the Boring Company. I was just lamenting the fact that we really don't know what this thing is going to be. The uncertainty goes far beyond 'don't know exactly.' We just plain don't know what's going to come out of this project.

    We know how Hyperloop will work from a basic conceptual standpoint. But knowing a concept leaves us *very* short of specifics, from an engineering standpoint. A mission statement isn't a set of engineering drawings. And if you don't know how it will be engineered, then you don't know much at all about what the thing will end up looking like or what it will be like to use it.

    *Every* design parameter remains to be nailed down: how terminals will work, where they will go, how wide the tunnels will be, how gentle the turns, how comfortable the seats, provisions for cargo, provisions for rest rooms in passenger pods (or not), top speeds, average speeds, how air quality for passengers will be maintained and to what standards, what will happen if there is a medical emergency... I could go on for a thousand pages about what we don't know about this project.

    That's the very definition of vague.

    We know some general principles behind what the Boring Company hopes to do. That's about it.

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