Another dubious article

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Brian Battuello

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Ok, I was a bit snide. I skimmed the article and they have some good ideas. All in favor of lateral (or in this case horizontal) thinking. But Google or Youtube "Hovertrain" for a survey of various rail technology alternatives. Lots of hype, but none ever made it past a few miles of test track.

Here's one:

Also, I note that they make a big deal out of tiny tunnels, but don't comment about air resistance. Musk is correct that the tunnel has to be a vacuum, which is problematic.
 

Tlcooper93

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Ok, I was a bit snide. I skimmed the article and they have some good ideas. All in favor of lateral (or in this case horizontal) thinking. But Google or Youtube "Hovertrain" for a survey of various rail technology alternatives. Lots of hype, but none ever made it past a few miles of test track.

Here's one:

Also, I note that they make a big deal out of tiny tunnels, but don't comment about air resistance. Musk is correct that the tunnel has to be a vacuum, which is problematic.
agreed.
i take issue with any position that thinks swapping subways for Teslas is somehow a good idea.

To be fair, he does say that an electric minibus would be best, but his numbers are way off on the dollar per person value of a subway train vs. a tesla model 3.

Boston’s silver line already runs buses in tunnels, but if you ask any Bostonian, they’d much prefer a subway train between Logan and South Station, rather than a slow bus which doesn’t even have 100% row.
 
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George Harris

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"Nothing has the durability of a bad idea." "Everything is simple to the simple minded."

Many of these various traffic concepts have been around in some form or fashion for a long time. It is hard to know where to start. Musk sounds like he thinks he has a new and completely unique idea with people pods in tunnels. Welllll, there are a few things missing here. First and foremost there appears to be no consideration given to safety issues, such as the need for emergency access, evacuation routes, etc., etc. I have news for the old boy: Tunnel construction has been around for 100's, even 1,000's of years, with many people involved in it trying to figure out ways to do it easier and cheaper over a long period of time. You can't suddenly walk into the field ignoring all the lessons from the past. That is called, fools rush in where angels fear to tread. Yes, a small diameter tunnel is cheaper to construct than a large one, but one of the first things you get into dealing with issues in tunnels is this strong desire to go back to the designers, and scream at them, "Don't shrink wrap the equipment!" Also, you still need right of way. Same as with pipelines, except on a larger scale. It may be invisible to the world, but you still need to buy the right to build and access a facility from the owner of the land you are passing under.

Vacuum tube? Been tried 100 plus years ago. Try maintaining the vacuum in a large cross section long facility. Hard to do then, maybe not as much so now as in the past, however, but still not easy. It takes huge amount of energy to achieve a vacuum or low pressure environment and to maintain it. Keeping everything sealed approaches impossibility. Then you have to take it off to do any maintenance. You have to have airlocks at every stopping point. You can go faster and with less propulsion energy on straight lines because you are not pushing a plug of air, but your curving and starting and stopping issues are the same. it is called "g" forces on the passengers. You don't worry about these in the tubes to the bank drive-throughs, but people are not paper. If a facility carrying people changed speed and direction at the same rates used with these little paper carriers you would be removing bodies from the ends or sides of the vehicles with a large spatula. In California, for example, you do not want these facilities going through fault lines. One thing about it, you do not have to worry about getting out the injured in case of a quake, you will just be removing bodies when you get around to it. Then you simply cut the unidentifiable blob up into chunks about people sized each and put a name on each chunk of the blob so there is something for the family to bury.

The whole idea that the transport capacity of 12+ car trains running a 15 minute intervals or so, as is the case on some high speed railway systems can be provided by a slug of 12 to 20 people size pods is simply nuts. And . . . giving some of the nut cases traveling today, do you really want to be locked up in a pod with a few other people for an hour or so in an other than propulsion is an uncontrolled environment?

Musk may have good ideas with the electric cars and even space vehicles but both things have in common this: You do not have to build any facilities to carry them. The roads used by the cars have been built by others and the space vehicles do not need roads to operate on.
 

jis

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"Nothing has the durability of a bad idea." "Everything is simple to the simple minded."

Musk may have good ideas with the electric cars and even space vehicles but both things have in common this: You do not have to build any facilities to carry them. The roads used by the cars have been built by others and the space vehicles do not need roads to operate on.
That's why, so as to get into the business of building "roads" he wants to build those tiny tunnels for his cars and then try to sell it as a transit system, and there are idiots in Fort Lauderdale and Miami, who don't have enough brains to know what is what, and haven't ever come across any ludicrous idea that they did not like, are happy to attach their barge to Musk's Tugboat :D 🤪 🤷‍♂️
 

AFS1970

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I think Seattle has an underground busway also, but I think the busses that use it are the electric trolley busses. It has been years since I have been there. I don't remember the details.
 

jis

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I think Seattle has an underground busway also, but I think the busses that use it are the electric trolley busses. It has been years since I have been there. I don't remember the details.
Busway shared with LRT. But those tunnels are huge... nothing like the tiny ones Musk is peddling for his Teslas.
 

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That's why, so as to get into the business of building "roads" he wants to build those tiny tunnels for his cars and then try to sell it as a transit system, and there are idiots in Fort Lauderdale and Miami, who don't have enough brains to know what is what, and haven't ever come across any ludicrous idea that they did not like, are happy to attach their barge to Musk's Tugboat :D 🤪 🤷‍♂️
Florida People, nuff said!😄
( to be Fair, Texas has them too!😉)
 

sttom

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Goes from trains are better than cars to let's use cars in tunnels! This is not a serious person. A short list of problems with the Teslas in Tunnels scam include fires, batteries like to do this. Property rights, people still own the land below grade and above it till it becomes air space. And trains already have a robust enough network to reroute around problems which tunnels have a hard time doing because of reverse branching. My eyes can't roll hard enough.
 

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I think the Elon Musk accomplishments are too much to overlook. I drive past his test tunnel often and can’t comprehend how he is going to go from there to somehow using tunnels to solve our transportation woes. But, I don’t doubt for a minute that he is going to have some impact for future means of transportation.
 
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sttom

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I think the Elon Musk accomplishments are too much to overlook. I drive past his test tunnel often and can’t comprehend how he is going to go from there to somehow using tunnels to solve our transportation woes. But, I don’t doubt for a minute that he is going to have some impact for futur.
It's one thing to over look and it's another to splash reality on people's faces like cold water. Which is what I'm doing. Saying tunnel boring would be cheaper if we dug a lot of them and built them all to one loading guage isn't innovation, it's economies of scale. The Boring company has made some improvements on drilling or at least are saying they want to, but the technology would be better used digging tunnels for subways than tunnels for Teslas. Digging a subway system for cars is a waste of money no matter how cheap you make it. Since even an airport people mover has a greater capacity to move people than a bunch of cars do. Which is the problem with his shtick, the tunnels are to small to fit anything bigger than an SUV through. So if any of this gets built and fails, it's only worth is becoming a utility line.
 

George Harris

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I think the Elon Musk accomplishments are too much to overlook. I drive past his test tunnel often and can’t comprehend how he is going to go from there to somehow using tunnels to solve our transportation woes. But, I don’t doubt for a minute that he is going to have some impact for futur.
Sorry, I remain underimpressed with the guy. He has been very good at jumping on the latest bandwagon in the "environmentalist" movement/fad, but his main accomplishment with the Tesla is to be able to sell overpriced cars by getting huge government subsidies to the buyers, He is sufficiently impressed with himself that he seems to be unwilling to learn from the experiences of others. His tunnels are a primary example, in that he passes by or ignores many of the real issues with tunneling. His Florida urban tunnel schemes are outstanding examples. Why do you think the Miami rail transit line is all surface or viaduct? The reality of building and maintaining transit tunnels in a city at near sea level elevation in porous soils and subject to hurricanes is, to put it politely, that to do such is nonsense. Anyone with the least bit of understanding of reality should have figured out that in a matter of minutes. For people buying into Musk's adventures, yes they seem fascinating and the stocks are going up, but wisdom is knowing when to get out, as I feel like at some point realities will cause many of his ventures to fall on their face.
 

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Sorry, I remain underimpressed with the guy. He has been very good at jumping on the latest bandwagon in the "environmentalist" movement/fad, but his main accomplishment with the Tesla is to be able to sell overpriced cars by getting huge government subsidies to the buyers, He is sufficiently impressed with himself that he seems to be unwilling to learn from the experiences of others. His tunnels are a primary example, in that he passes by or ignores many of the real issues with tunneling. His Florida urban tunnel schemes are outstanding examples. Why do you think the Miami rail transit line is all surface or viaduct? The reality of building and maintaining transit tunnels in a city at near sea level elevation in porous soils and subject to hurricanes is, to put it politely, that to do such is nonsense. Anyone with the least bit of understanding of reality should have figured out that in a matter of minutes. For people buying into Musk's adventures, yes they seem fascinating and the stocks are going up, but wisdom is knowing when to get out, as I feel like at some point realities will cause many of his ventures to fall on their face.
Besides the Tesla being a undeniably fine automobile, You must be taking his Space X Company with a grain of salt.
 

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One can view Elon Musk's seperate ideas fairly and objectively.
His tesla is an amazing vehicle, and really was the first viable electric car. His space company certainly is on track to do great things, but is just that: on track. Let's hold off on evaluating that pie until it has finished baking.

His ideas with Vegas are stupid (in my opinion) and nothing else.
The convention center where the tunnels are located reviewed contract applications for a system capable of transporting 4,400 people per hour between the various locations.

The current system, at its very best, falls extremely far short of that goal, and wouldn't even compete with what a crappy sub-par subway might accomplish.
 

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One can view Elon Musk's seperate ideas fairly and objectively.
His tesla is an amazing vehicle, and really was the first viable electric car. His space company certainly is on track to do great things, but is just that: on track. Let's hold off on evaluating that pie until it has finished baking.

His ideas with Vegas are stupid (in my opinion) and nothing else.
The convention center where the tunnels are located reviewed contract applications for a system capable of transporting 4,400 people per hour between the various locations.

The current system, at its very best, falls extremely far short of that goal, and wouldn't even compete with what a crappy sub-par subway might accomplish.
They could install a LIM-powered Disney WEDway PeopleMover in the tunnel. It has a capacity of 4,885 per hour, and will probably fit. :D
 

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That's why, so as to get into the business of building "roads" he wants to build those tiny tunnels for his cars and then try to sell it as a transit system, and there are idiots in Fort Lauderdale and Miami, who don't have enough brains to know what is what, and haven't ever come across any ludicrous idea that they did not like, are happy to attach their barge to Musk's Tugboat :D 🤪 🤷‍♂️
Ft. Lauderdale and Miami? In addition to all of the other problems described earlier with tunnels, every mile of tunnels in those cities would be below the water table. As far as I can tell from articles on the Web, none of the existing Miami Metrorail system is in tunnels; there must be a reason for that.
 

MARC Rider

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One can view Elon Musk's seperate ideas fairly and objectively.
His tesla is an amazing vehicle, and really was the first viable electric car. His space company certainly is on track to do great things, but is just that: on track. Let's hold off on evaluating that pie until it has finished baking.
What was it that made the Tesla amazing? I think part of it may have just been a matter of timing; he put it on the market when there was more of an interest in electric cars, and also the State of California was starting to make noises about requiring "zero emission vehicles." He still hasn't produced a model that's priced for the masses. There are still issues about the build quality of the cars. There are still issues about the excessive use of pseudo "self-driving" computer technology that results in accidents. Other companies are now making electric cars, and it's possible that when the dust settles some time in the future, another brand of electric car may end up being dominant in the marketplace. We need to remember that the guy who invented the automobile was not named "Ford."

As far as his space company, he's really just another contractor for NASA. Tell me what's the difference between SpaceX and the contractors who built the Saturn V/Apollo. The SpaceX craft is still piloted by NASA astronauts on NASA missions.
 

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So if any of this gets built and fails, it's only worth is becoming a utility line.
Actually, that would be great, it they built utility-line tunnels under every street, then when they needed to do utility work, or replace pipes, like they're doing in my neighborhood right now, you wouldn't have to dig up the street and cause traffic jams. Also, the electric, telephone, cable, lines, etc., wouldn't keep getting knocked down every time a storm comes through.
 

Tlcooper93

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What was it that made the Tesla amazing? I think part of it may have just been a matter of timing; he put it on the market when there was more of an interest in electric cars, and also the State of California was starting to make noises about requiring "zero emission vehicles." He still hasn't produced a model that's priced for the masses. There are still issues about the build quality of the cars. There are still issues about the excessive use of pseudo "self-driving" computer technology that results in accidents. Other companies are now making electric cars, and it's possible that when the dust settles some time in the future, another brand of electric car may end up being dominant in the marketplace. We need to remember that the guy who invented the automobile was not named "Ford."

As far as his space company, he's really just another contractor for NASA. Tell me what's the difference between SpaceX and the contractors who built the Saturn V/Apollo. The SpaceX craft is still piloted by NASA astronauts on NASA missions.
As I said, it was the first truly viable all electric car. Previous electric cars from other brands had such lacking battery technology that it didn't last longer than 100 miles at best (Chevy Volt).

Anyone who thinks they can use the Tesla's "self-driving" as an autopilot is an idiot, and there are significant failsafes in place to prevent it being treated as such. The car will exit self-driving mode and yell though an alarm if you dont keep your hands on the wheel.

What build quality issues are you referring to? Not saying there are none, but you didn't mention any.

Saying that over time another company will build a better electric car isn't a remarkable statement, and doesn't refute Teslas being a great car now.

Lastly, to be a great car, does it need to be priced for the masses?
I dare say an Aston Martin is a great car, but certainly isn't priced for the masses.

It sounds to me like you have unnecesary beef with Musk, which to me comes across similarly to having a silly obsession with Musk.
 
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Michigan Mom

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Wouldn't get in one of those pods if you paid me.. never been impressed by the Musk hype....as for the Tesla, I love the concept of electric cars. However the recent news reported by fire departments about the water and manpower required to put out the battery fires when the car is involved in an accident, brings up a serious drawback to the environmental equation.
 
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