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Elon Musk is serial entrepreneur, billionaire, Series A investor, engineer and inventor. He is the CEO and product architect of Tesla Inc.; founder, CEO and CTO of SpaceX; Co-chairman of OpenAI; founder and CEO of Neuralink.
His has many innovative, crazy and futuristic ideas. What separates him from the rest of us is that he is one who speak out loud about his ideas, take action and then quickly put things in motion to make them a reality – the real life Tony Stark (Iron Man).
The following are some of Elon Musk on-going projects, some of which may take years to complete.
Hyperloop is an innovative transport system whereby passengers or goods are transported through sealed vacuum tubes, free of air resistance to their destination.
We have seen these in SciFi movies where people are whisked from one point to another at super-sonic speed. If Elon Musk has his way, we will soon see these innovative transport system become a reality.
The hyperloop concept was first mentioned by Elon Musk in 2012, and then published and open-sourced in 2013. Read the full PDF, Hyperloop Alpha.
The pods or passenger capsule sits on a cushion of air between the capsule and the low pressure tube. The capsule is propelled forward by magnetic linear accelerator at each station and the rotors in each capsule.
According to Elon Musk in 2013, it would only take 30 minutes to transport people from LA to San Francisco (610km) at a speed of 760mph – half the time it takes a plane.
Image Source: dailymail.co.uk
His recent tweets on getting verbal government approval for a hyperloop from New York to Washington DC has attracted a lot of attention.
The system will be build by his company, The Boring Company. The travel time for the underground tube, NY-Phil-Balt-DC Hyperloop will take only 29 minutes.
2) World’s largest lithium-ion battery
One of Elon Musk most impressive project is to build a 129 MWh lithium-ion battery for South Australia. This massive battery will be connected to a wind farm, to store generated electric which will be distributed across South Australia.
Earlier in March, 2017, Elon Musk tweeted that Tesla will get the system install within 100 days of contract signature or it’s free.
The system is installed to provide stability to the electrical supply in South Australia which was hit by frequent blackouts since September last year. The repeated blackouts has resulted in political brawls over energy policy.
A mobile battery with a capacity of 2,000mAh and cell voltage of 1.2V will have a rating of 2.4Wh. So, a 129 MWh lithium-ion battery will be equivalent to about 53.8 million pieces of 2,000 mAh battery.
The 129 MWh lithium-ion battery is 3 times the capacity of an earlier model, making it the largest in the world. With this milestone, expect to see larger batteries in the future.
3) SpaceX City on Mars
According to the Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) website, the mission of SpaceX is to revolutionize space and rocket technology, to build a self-sustaining city on Mars and other planets.
Elon Musk is the Founder and CEO of SpaceX which was founded in 2002. SpaceX successfully sent their own vehicle, SpaceX’s Falcon 1 to orbit earth in 2008. Due to their success, NASA then awarded SpaceX the contract to transport cargo and crew to the International Space Station (ISS).
In the Code Conference, 2016, Elon Musk mentioned that SpaceX will send a Dragon version 2 spacecraft on a one-way trip to Mars in 2018.
Recently SpaceX re-schedule the their first mission to Mars to 2020, to focus their resource on the Falcon rockets. The Mars mission was to land the Red Dragon spacecraft on Mars to test the technology to land heavy equipment on Mars.
The Red Dragon will be using supersonic retro-propulsion technology to lower itself vertically down using rocket motors.
The latest update from Elon Musk is that the Red Dragon will be scrapped and a much bigger ship will be used for the landing on Mars.
Elon Musk is the co-founder and Chairman of OpenAI, a non-profit artificial intelligence (AI) research organization.
OpenAI goals is to carry out research to build safe artificial intelligence and ensure that AI benefits as many people as possible.
The Terminator movies series have highlighted the dangers of self-modifying AI software going rogue, and creating other AI machines and weapons to eliminate human beings.
Image Source: officechai.com
OpenAI was founded in 2015 and has a full-time staff of 60 researchers.
Elon and technology stalwarts such as Infosys, Amazon Web Services and YC Research among others has committed $1 billion to OpenAI research to maximize humanity benefits from AI and keeping artificial intelligence safe for humans. They stress that AI must follow the laws of the land and adhere to our ethical standards.
Elon Musk’s Neuralink is another of his futuristic project. Neuralink aims to build a high speed connection interface between humans and computers.
Welcome to the future. Just imagine this…. When your brain is connected to a computer, your thoughts can be send through an interface to your computer for further processing and then return the results back to your brain. Since your brain is connected to the computer, it can also access large amount of data stored in the computer and the Internet.
Wouldn’t that be great or is it a bad idea? Let’s wait and see whether Elon can make it a reality!
6) The Boring Company
Elon Musk’s founded The Boring Company in late 2016, after he tweeted about building tunnels to avoid traffic jams. Tunnels can easily transport vehicles from point A to point B more quickly and more efficient than the current “clogged” road system.
The following Instagram shows the tunnel boring machine.
A video on the company’s website shows how the tunnel system works. A vehicle stops on a special platform, which them move downwards much like a elevator onto the tunnel.
The automated platform or sled then whisk the vehicle through the underground tunnels to its destination. Upon reaching the destination, the vehicle is brought up back to street level.
The Boring Company’s goal is to create underground tunnels cheaper and faster. Currently making underground tunnels is very slow and the cost is very high.
A test tunnel and car elevator was constructed at the SpaceX HQ in Hawthorne.
On July 26, Elon Musk posted an update with a video of the car elevator on Instagram.