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Author Topic: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...  (Read 4906 times)

Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #100 on: August 25, 2017, 08:54:43 PM »
Looks like Boring Company received permission from the Hawthorne city council to go ahead with their test tunnel under city streets.  They will still need to pull permits but that's technical and not political stuff.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #101 on: August 25, 2017, 09:25:25 PM »
Elon Musk’s Boring Company receives green light to extend 2-mile long tunnel under LA
Earlier this month, Elon Musk’s Boring Company presented the second phase of its tunnel at a special meeting of the Hawthorne city council.

We now learn that they have approved the plan and the startup can start extending its tunnel.

Hawthorn’s Daily Breeze reported:

The City Council approved the two-mile underground track Tuesday night in a 4-1 vote, with only Councilman Nilo Michelin dissenting.”

As we previously reported, the second phase would link the tunnel entrance and 160-ft first phase of the tunnel under SpaceX’s parking lot to a new 2- mile (3.2 km) long tunnel under 120th street all the way to Hawthorne Boulevard.

Here’s a visual representation of where the Boring Company wants to dig based on the plans submitted to the city: [se below]

They will dig the tunnel at a depth of 44 feet and said not to expect to see any construction or disturbance at the ground level.

The company will use its first boring machine (Godot), which they want to improve on during the making of this tunnel.

Brett Horton, Senior Director of Facilities and Construction for both SpaceX and Boring Company, said during the presentation to the council:

“It is a research and development tunnel meant for us to learn about our tunneling machine (Godot), understand the technology and where we can improve it, and also test and prove out the transportation system.”

He explained that Boring Company will use Tesla’s technology for its transportation system in the tunnel – a sort of electric skate platform to transport cars autonomously in the tunnel.

While it’s still only in development, the ultimate goal of the project is to create an entire network of tunnels under LA to alleviate the traffic.

They plan for drivers to pull up on those platforms and be transported at higher speeds than on surface roads.

Musk hopes that after the test tunnel, they will connect with LAX to dig up to Culver City, Santa Monica, Westwood and Sherman Oaks. He is reportedly working with the Mayor of Los Angeles on the project.

In other projects for longer distances, the Boring Company is actually thinking about creating a vacuum in the tunnels to turn them into a hyperloop system. Musk says that the company is already working on one between New York and Washington DC.

SpaceX is going to be holding its second hyperloop pod competition this weekend at their test track near their headquarters.
https://electrek.co/2017/08/25/elon-musk-boring-company-green-light-2-mile-long-tunnel-under-la/
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #102 on: August 25, 2017, 09:38:46 PM »
The better plan, IMHO, is to have drivers pull up to parking lots (or arrive in their robotaxi) and travel down to a superfast, 100+ MPH, 'express' subway car that takes them to their destination without stops along the way.  Then get into a robotaxi at the other end if they need to travel 'off foot'.

Moving personal cars into crowded areas where parking is already a problem makes less sense.  Even if they get there quickly.

I guess if Boring drills car tunnels they can be converted to mass transit later.  Let rich people pay for the first set of tunnels and the early part of the learning curve.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #103 on: August 25, 2017, 09:50:10 PM »
The better plan, IMHO, is to have drivers pull up to parking lots (or arrive in their robotaxi) and travel down to a superfast, 100+ MPH, 'express' subway car that takes them to their destination without stops along the way.  Then get into a robotaxi at the other end if they need to travel 'off foot'.

Moving personal cars into crowded areas where parking is already a problem makes less sense.  Even if they get there quickly.

I guess if Boring drills car tunnels they can be converted to mass transit later.  Let rich people pay for the first set of tunnels and the early part of the learning curve.

That's what the little pods are for -- just a more user-friendly size than a big subway car.  (Also bicycle-friendly, to judge by the picture.)  Smaller passenger groups mean (most?) everyone gets to their destination without intervening stops.
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #104 on: August 25, 2017, 11:18:51 PM »
Too few.  Let's see a system that moves a lot of people in a hurry. 

Fire off a pod every minute with each holding 30 or more people during rush hours.  30 people 2x per minute for 30 minutes would get 1,800 people to work in a half hour.  A few tunnels, carefully located could take thousands of cars off roads.


Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #105 on: August 26, 2017, 12:08:20 AM »
Too few.  Let's see a system that moves a lot of people in a hurry. 

Fire off a pod every minute with each holding 30 or more people during rush hours.  30 people 2x per minute for 30 minutes would get 1,800 people to work in a half hour.  A few tunnels, carefully located could take thousands of cars off roads.

I doubt you could find 30 or more people all going to the same destination from the same entryway within a minute.  Another benefit of van-size pods is: the tunnel entryway can be as small as a parking space or two, as shown in the video.  They don't need a big subway station.
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #106 on: August 26, 2017, 12:28:21 AM »
Might want to ride some subways in a large city.  Watch how many people get off in the financial district stop, for example.  Here's how a LA Downtown system might look.



Imagine an underground station with 10 platforms.  With a pod leaving every 30 seconds that's five minutes to load a pod.  Subway trains do not stop that long and riders often have to push their way off and on crowded cars.

Each platform could have an elevator that held a full pod of people. 

Take a load down just before the pod arrives so that they are lined up ready to go.  (Four across seating loading from one side?  Use guide ropes to get people all lined up.

A pod pulls in, opens and lets people out.  Then pulls forward one length to load those waiting on the platform.  The people who arrived ride the elevator up and get swapped out for the next load.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #107 on: August 26, 2017, 06:55:56 PM »
Might want to ride some subways in a large city.  Watch how many people get off in the financial district stop, for example.  Here's how a LA Downtown system might look.

<picture snipped>

Imagine an underground station with 10 platforms.  With a pod leaving every 30 seconds that's five minutes to load a pod.  Subway trains do not stop that long and riders often have to push their way off and on crowded cars.

Each platform could have an elevator that held a full pod of people. 

Take a load down just before the pod arrives so that they are lined up ready to go.  (Four across seating loading from one side?  Use guide ropes to get people all lined up.

A pod pulls in, opens and lets people out.  Then pulls forward one length to load those waiting on the platform.  The people who arrived ride the elevator up and get swapped out for the next load.

That would be a huge station, indeed!  All carved out beneath center city Los Angeles?  It would be a massive project, and with structural concerns much more extensive than a 14-foot diameter tunnel would have.  Maybe someday!  But Musk’s paper recommends longer routes, hundreds of miles, for the hyperloop in California.

However….  Central LA, to Simi Valley is only 35 miles; to Long Beach, only 20 miles.  At the projected 125 mph, Musk’s “skate” idea would take only a few minutes longer than a full-on hyperloop.  Plus, the small “skate” entrances and exits mean there could be multiple downtown destinations, instead of one giant hyperloop station in the middle of the city.  You’d enter or exit the system closer to your origin/destination, with less need for street transportation.  The goal is to take cars off downtown streets, as well as unclogging the highways — particularly at the end of the day, when everyone leaves the office at about the same time.

Scheduling your trip via an app would allow computers to assign you (and fellow travelers to your destination) a little pod which will arrive at a particular entryway at a particular time, making most efficient use of the system.
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #108 on: August 26, 2017, 07:16:55 PM »
I'm not suggesting an evacuated tunnel/tube for commuter pods.  One hundred twenty-five miles an hour (sled speeds) would be fast enough, especially with 'express' pods that did not stop along the route.

Large station?  Maybe the size of a normal subway station in terms of total square feet.  Pods stopping and loading side by side rather than a large number of subway cars stopping one behind the other.

Getting cars off the streets means getting fewer cars on the streets.  Moving a modest number of cars quickly downtown would help some with commute traffic but do nothing about downtown congestion/parking. 

Small capacity sled-cars won't move a lot of people. 

I bet if you could travel from Central LA, to Simi Valley (35 miles) or Long Beach (20 miles) at 125 miles an hour we'd have a large number of people who would have no problems with using a 'standing only' pod.  35 miles would take 17 minutes (plus a little acceleration/deceleration time.  A pod that carried 30 seated people could carry a lot more standing.   Comfortably fill, don't pack.

Run a mix of seat and stand pods.  Charge less for the stand pods with seat pod discounts for those who need to sit.

jai mitchell

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #109 on: August 26, 2017, 08:00:06 PM »
Might want to ride some subways in a large city.  Watch how many people get off in the financial district stop, for example.  Here's how a LA Downtown system might look.



Imagine an underground station with 10 platforms.  With a pod leaving every 30 seconds that's five minutes to load a pod.  Subway trains do not stop that long and riders often have to push their way off and on crowded cars.

Each platform could have an elevator that held a full pod of people. 

Take a load down just before the pod arrives so that they are lined up ready to go.  (Four across seating loading from one side?  Use guide ropes to get people all lined up.

A pod pulls in, opens and lets people out.  Then pulls forward one length to load those waiting on the platform.  The people who arrived ride the elevator up and get swapped out for the next load.

not sure how I feel about this. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1IaKjk3dc0
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #110 on: August 26, 2017, 09:14:13 PM »
In general, it's safer below ground, in a well constructed tunnel, than above ground in an earthquake. 

An 8.0 and all bets are off.

TerryM

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #111 on: August 26, 2017, 10:33:16 PM »
In general, it's safer below ground, in a well constructed tunnel, than above ground in an earthquake. 

An 8.0 and all bets are off.
Can I ask for a source on the 8.0 figure?


I remember the 6.7 Northridge quake tearing waterpipes, gas lines, & sewer pipes apart - as well as breaking concrete block walls, freeways & any manner of structures.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1994_Northridge_earthquake


With 6 quakes of this magnitude striking California since 1987,(the last 30 years), it seems the odds of experiencing this level quake is fairly high.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_earthquakes_in_California


When the ground is seismically active, I'd prefer to be on top of it.
Terry


Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #112 on: August 27, 2017, 12:06:48 AM »
"When the ground is seismically active, I'd prefer to be on top of it."

Above ground, you have "stationary" buildings and infrastructure being ripped apart by movement of the earth on which it sits. Below ground, you are moving with the earth, so shearing forces are minimized.

Also, electric signals move much faster than earthquake waves.  Any detection of significant seismic movement can trip alarms that shut down the entire system.  Japan is more seismically active than California, but its bullet train has an incredible safety record.
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #113 on: August 27, 2017, 02:51:34 AM »
In general, it's safer below ground, in a well constructed tunnel, than above ground in an earthquake. 

An 8.0 and all bets are off.
Can I ask for a source on the 8.0 figure?


I remember the 6.7 Northridge quake tearing waterpipes, gas lines, & sewer pipes apart - as well as breaking concrete block walls, freeways & any manner of structures.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1994_Northridge_earthquake


With 6 quakes of this magnitude striking California since 1987,(the last 30 years), it seems the odds of experiencing this level quake is fairly high.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_earthquakes_in_California


When the ground is seismically active, I'd prefer to be on top of it.
Terry

Jai's youtube link.

In the 1989 Loma Prieta (San Francisco) 6.9 earthquake a length of elevated highway fell.  Well over 100 buildings were destroyed.  A 76-by-50-foot (23 m × 15 m) section of the upper deck of the Bay Bridge fell onto the deck below  The bridge was out of service for a month.

Sixty-three people were killed and almost 4,000 injured.

BART (underground light rail) suffered only a small amount of cosmetic damage at one station.  The system was shut down for six hours while inspections were carried out and full service was restored within 12 hours.  One train was in the Transbay tunnel  during the quake and the operator detected no motion.

The LA Metro subway went into service in 1993 and experienced the 6.7 Northridge earthquake in 1994.  The subway suffered no damage and  has not been damaged in the many smaller earthquakes that have happened since. 

In the Northridge quake 57 people on the surface died and about 9,000 were injured.  125,000 people were made temporarily homeless.

Seven major freeway bridges in the area collapsed, and 212 were damaged, disrupting traffic in the Ventura-Los Angeles region for weeks following the earthquake. Communication, water and power distribution systems were affected and several fires started.  82,000 residential and commercial units and 5,400 mobile homes were damaged or destroyed.




crandles

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #114 on: August 27, 2017, 06:51:51 PM »
In general, it's safer below ground, in a well constructed tunnel, than above ground in an earthquake. 

An 8.0 and all bets are off.
Can I ask for a source on the 8.0 figure?


I wasn't sure what was being asked by this question. Perhaps as answered by Bob but perhaps also:

USA hasn't suffered an 8, (or only 317? years ago when modern infrastructure didn't exist). But is this a good reason for saying all bets are off?

Perhaps there isn't any subway or other tunnels anywhere that have been subjected to an 8?
« Last Edit: August 27, 2017, 08:22:07 PM by crandles »

ghoti

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #115 on: August 27, 2017, 07:08:00 PM »
Perhaps there isn't any subway or other tunnels anywhere that have been subjected to an 8?

Tokyo has an extensive subway that was hit by at least a magnitude 8 earthquake.

Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #116 on: August 27, 2017, 07:15:56 PM »
Honshu, Japan - 2011 - 9.1 very major shaker.  (Fukushima meltdown)

The images of Japan in the aftermath of the giant earthquake and its terrifying tsunami last week and the consequent failure of its nuclear power plant reactors at Fukushima show the scale of the disaster that the people of Japan have to face and overcome.
 
Amid all the mayhem, the news reporting and images are of what can be seen and witnessed on the surface, but what of the underground?

Japan has an underground environment to mirror its vast development on the surface. The fact that there is no news about Japan's underground infrastructure must mean there is no news - or that the report is so minor as to pale to insignificance compared to the reality of the situation on the surface.

In reaching out to our friends and readers in Japan after the catastrophic events of last week, TunnelTalk has learned that while "most of the train and subway in Tokyo stopped in last midnight [but] almost all of the trains and subways are [now] running [again]."

 "A 16-foot-high tunnel running underneath the airport's runways [in Sendai, the city most affected by the tsunami] for about 500 yards was entirely flooded."

"As on so many previous occasions, the reality of the aftermath of strong earthquakes is that the underground remains remarkably intact when the surface has suffered devastating destruction.

Earthquakes in Mexico City; in Kobe Japan; in Chengdu, China; in San Francisco, California; in Santiago, Chile; all had no headline news of underground or tunnel collapses or failures. For cities in seismically active zones, and for urban development in general, this has to be one of the abiding inherent advantages of underground facilities over surface or elevated alternatives. Of course there it is acknowledged that the underground environment would have been equally as horrifyingly impacted to the consequences of the tsunami as the surface."


https://www.tunneltalk.com/Discussion-Forum-Mar11-Seismic-concerns-and-consequences.php

According to this map Sendai was in the high 8/ low 9 shake zone.  And Sendai has a subway system.

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/official20110311054624120_30#map


crandles

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #117 on: August 27, 2017, 07:32:42 PM »
Perhaps there isn't any subway or other tunnels anywhere that have been subjected to an 8?

Tokyo has an extensive subway that was hit by at least a magnitude 8 earthquake.

2011 9.1 quake was something like 220 miles away. Not sure how much the strength decays with distance though.

jai mitchell

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #118 on: August 27, 2017, 08:02:50 PM »
In general, it's safer below ground, in a well constructed tunnel, than above ground in an earthquake. 

An 8.0 and all bets are off.
Can I ask for a source on the 8.0 figure?
Terry

https://weather.com/news/news/san-andreas-fault-california-mega-quake-earthquake-big-one

A study published earlier this year concluded that the land on either side of the San Andreas fault has been pushing against the other at a rate of more than 1 inch per year since 1857.

“So you expect that amount of accumulation of energy will be released in the future in a large-magnitude rupture, somewhere along the San Andreas,” said USGS research geologist and study lead author Kate Scharer.

The last major earthquake near Los Angeles hit Fort Tejon in 1857 and registered a 7.9.

An 8.2 earthquake would produce far more energy than what was produced by the nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima. But a bigger issue is that all of Southern California would be hit at once.

2011 9.1 quake was something like 220 miles away. Not sure how much the strength decays with distance though.

THIS IS THE MODEL RESULTS BELOW

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blTx92TuWHA

note that the direction of propagation along the fault line causes a 'piling up' of energy and a launch of this directional wave directly into LA where some areas will experience +9.0 impacts (red)
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #119 on: August 27, 2017, 08:32:31 PM »
Perhaps there isn't any subway or other tunnels anywhere that have been subjected to an 8?

Tokyo has an extensive subway that was hit by at least a magnitude 8 earthquake.

2011 9.1 quake was something like 220 miles away. Not sure how much the strength decays with distance though.

The map I linked puts Tokyo in the 8 range for the 2011 quake.

Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #120 on: August 27, 2017, 08:36:22 PM »
THIS IS THE MODEL RESULTS BELOW

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=blTx92TuWHA

note that the direction of propagation along the fault line causes a 'piling up' of energy and a launch of this directional wave directly into LA where some areas will experience +9.0 impacts (red)

That doesn't tell us anything about the surface vs subsurface movement.

The idea that tunnels move with the earth while the earth moves underneath buildings and bridges is  interesting.  Given the lack of movement-caused tunnel damage (flooding doesn't count) in several major earthquakes it looks like this is possible.

crandles

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #121 on: August 27, 2017, 09:03:35 PM »
Does power cut causing stuck in train problem count as an issue.

The area/volume of tunnels that have experienced strong quakes is very small compared with areas above ground where damage could occur. This might make where you would prefer to be a difficult comparison to make. Also rather than a simple above ground / tunnel it might be better to have several categories

1 Open field, no trees, no buildings, no landslip risk, no tsunami risk
2 Field some nearby trees, no buildings, no landslip risk, no tsunami risk
3 Wood, no buildings, no landslip risk, no tsunami risk
4 Tunnel, no items that could fall, no landslip risk, no tsunami risk
5 Hill some landslip risk, no buildings, no tsunami risk
6 Beach/lakeside, no buildings, no landslip risk
7 In/near building, no landslip risk, no tsunami risk
8 In/near building, some tsunami risk

Obviously could make lots more categories and above might not be right order. More people in 7 and 8 than in all other categories combined so a switch to 4th best place might be sensible?

Bob Wallace

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #122 on: August 27, 2017, 09:14:37 PM »
Does power cut causing stuck in train problem count as an issue.

In general that would be a no fatality/no injury event.  Many/most tunnels already have emergency lighting so that people can walk out if the system isn't going to come back to life in a reasonable amount of time.

Some rescue system (battery powered powered cars to haul in water/food and move a few people out at a time) could be added if there's a need.

TerryM

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #123 on: August 27, 2017, 09:39:38 PM »
Bob, et al


You've convinced me that tunnels will survive strong earthquakes, and much appreciation for all the data and logic.
I canceled my earthquake insurance on my California home decades ago on the advice of an acquaintance who did risk assessment work for the air force. He believed that quake insurance with it's high costs and high co-pay was ridiculous for single story frame buildings. I haven't regretted the decision to this day. ::)


Terry


ghoti

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #124 on: August 27, 2017, 09:40:05 PM »
This conversation has drifted quite far. It started with the question of whether underground tunnels are more susceptible to quakes than above ground alternatives. Now it seems like we are questioning whether they take any damage in the most massive quakes. This is silly. Taking some damage or possibly being affected by power outages still means tunnels are in a much better position compared to above ground facilities.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #125 on: August 28, 2017, 01:25:35 AM »
Here are some relevant passages from Musk's original Hyperloop paper.
Note: he intends the Hyperloop to be powered by solar power and on-board batteries, not the grid.

4.3.3. Energy Storage Components
Energy storage allows this linear accelerator to only draw its average power of 8,000 hp (6 MW) (rather than the peak power of 74,000 hp or 55 MW) from its solar array.

Building the energy storage element out of the same lithium ion cells available in the Tesla Model S is economical. A battery array with enough power capability to provide the worst-case smoothing power has a lot of energy – launching 1 capsule only uses 0.5% of the total energy – so degradation due to cycling is not an issue. With proper construction and controls, the battery could be directly connected to the HVDC bus, eliminating the need for an additional DC/DC converter to connect it to the propulsion system.


4.5.2. Power Outage
The vast majority of the Hyperloop travel distance is spent coasting and so the capsule does not require continuous power to travel.
The capsule life support systems will be powered by two or more redundant lithium ion battery packs making it unaffected by a power outage. In the event of a power outage occurring after a capsule had been launched, all linear accelerators would be equipped with enough energy storage to bring all capsules currently in the Hyperloop tube safely to a stop at their destination. In addition, linear accelerators using the same storage would complete the acceleration of all capsules currently in the tube. For additional redundancy, all Hyperloop capsules would be fitted with a mechanical braking system to bring capsules safely to a stop.

In summary, all journeys would be completed as expected from the passenger’s perspective. Normal travel schedules would be resumed after power was restored.


4.5.3. Capsule Stranded in Tube
A capsule becoming stranded in the Hyperloop tube is highly unlikely as the capsule coasts the majority of the distance at high speed and so there is no propulsion required for more than 90% of the journey.

If a capsule were somehow to become stranded, capsules ahead would continue their journeys to the destination unaffected. Capsules behind the stranded one would be automatically instructed to deploy their emergency mechanical braking systems. Once all capsules behind the stranded capsule had been safely brought to rest, capsules would drive themselves to safety using small onboard electric motors to power deployed wheels.

All capsules would be equipped with a reserve air supply great enough to ensure the safety of all passengers for a worst case scenario event.
http://www.spacex.com/sites/spacex/files/hyperloop_alpha-20130812.pdf
« Last Edit: August 28, 2017, 01:33:57 AM by Sigmetnow »
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #126 on: August 28, 2017, 09:49:03 PM »
So if you build an elevator to lower cars into your boring tunnel, there must be a picture.  And of course, that car must be a Tesla. ;D

elonmusk:  A Model S in The Boring Company tunnel being dug under Los Angeles (starting in Hawthorne)
https://www.instagram.com/p/BYUeGjmAh8N/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Boring, boring ol' Elon Musk...
« Reply #127 on: August 31, 2017, 03:18:37 PM »
Tunnels in Houston?  Not just to channel water, but to provide a means of transportation/evacuation other than helicopters and little boats when the city floods.


Is it feasible for @boringcompany to dig drainage tunnels under Houston to prevent storms like #Harvey from devastating the area?

Elon Musk: Not sure, but probably
https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/902913054723022850


 In this situation the tunnels would flood too. Can't really design for a 1 in 500 year flood.

Elon Musk:  Tunnels are sealed to 5 atmospheres of water & gas pressure. Just need walls around the apertures.
https://twitter.com/elonmusk/status/903120412007047169


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