Elon Musk Talks Hyperloop Test Track, SpaceX Rocket Crash

Elon Musk Talks Hyperloop Test Track, SpaceX Rocket Crash

Five-mile Hyperloop test track is probably being built in Texas.

There's all sort of Elon Musk news this week, and we're not just talking about holding off the robot apocalypse.

First up, the SpaceX and Tesla Motors CEO has announced that he wants to build a five-mile-long Hyperloop test track, giving both corporations and student groups a facility to test passenger pod designs.

The facility will probably be built in the Lone Star State, said Musk to an audience at the Texas Transportation Forum (and on Twitter, as evidenced here). Given Musk's affinity for the state (or rather, its willingness to let him build all sorts of industrial space, like Tesla's Gigafactory, and a SpaceX launch facility), it's no surprise that a Hyperloop track is coming its way as well.

For the uninitiated: Musk's Hyperloop concept is essentially a large pneumatic tube for transporting humans a long distance at an incredible speed. In other words, it's like the tube your parents used to use at their bank drive-through when they were depositing checks and the like.

Musk's original idea saw a self-powering track connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco, with passenger pods traveling up to 800 mph. The trip would take about 30 minutes at max speed, and the track would theoretically be earthquake-resistant.

It's important to keep in mind that this is a test track, so the closest you'll get is if press is ever allowed on-board several years down the line. We're still many, many years away from this concept being used as a legitimate transportation vehicle.

And that's not all from Mr. Musk. Earlier today, SpaceX uploaded video (in Vine form, embedded below) of the ocean-based Falcon 9 rocket landing attempt. "Close, but no cigar," is right, as the rocket touches the platform...but at an awkward angle. It's hard to gauge how big the rocket is in the video, so keep in mind that the latest version of the Falcon 9 is about 68 feet tall, with a 12-foot diameter.

The landing failure is being attributed to the stabilization fins failing, as Musk explains in a series of tweets to everyone's favorite game dev, VR nut, and rocket scientist, John Carmack.

Source: ABC News

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If Isambard Kingdom Brunel couldn't get it to work, it ain't going to work.

You know, that launch is pretty damn close for a first attempt. I suppose as long as they're sending these rockets up it doesn't hurt to keep trying with what would otherwise just get destroyed since even one success could comp the cost of a significant number of failures.

I love Elon. He's like that weird kid in school that would draw silly technologies he told you would totally work, but he has millions upon millions of dollars to throw at everything he finds cool.

Also that rocket crash looked exactly like most of my attempted Kerbal Space Program landings.

I'm surprised you went for the bank example rather than just pointing at Futurama.

Sir Thomas Sean Connery:
I love Elon. He's like that weird kid in school that would draw silly technologies he told you would totally work, but he has millions upon millions of dollars to throw at everything he finds cool.

Also that rocket crash looked exactly like most of my attempted Kerbal Space Program landings.

Makes you feel better knowing that even the pros have trouble keeping the things upright. Here's hoping they figure it out faster than we do.

These private companies attempting space travel kind of unsettles me...

With the exception of SpaceX's unmanned flights, the whole Virgin Galactic debacle, and the deaths that were caused makes me extremely leery of these guys having influence over space exploration.
It's not about the science, it's about the bottom line and profit for them at the end of the day.

 

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