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Elon Musk says next Hyperloop competition will be in a six-mile, curved tunnel

Elon Musk says next Hyperloop competition will be in a six-mile, curved tunnel

July 22, 2019

Elon Musk planning to change up the Hyperloop student engineering competition that his company SpaceX has run for the past four years. Next year’s competition will be done in a tunnel that’s over six miles long, the SpaceX CEO said on Twitter on Sunday, with a curve instead of being in a straight line like the current, 3/4-mile test tunnel at SpaceX’s Hawthorne HQ.

That’s a big change, and one that it’s unclear how and where SpaceX will make it happen, given that the current test tunnel can support likely an additional “200 meters” according to Boring Company President Steve Davis speaking at this year’s Hyperloop Pod Competition finals earlier on Sunday.

Davis and Musk discussed extending the tunnel on stage, but it sounded like they were planning a relatively minor extension next year, with Musk musing that they’d likely be able to build a longer, Boring company-dug tunnel about three years from now for use in the annual student challenge.

“I don’t think we’ll have a long enough, straight enough underground tunnel a year from now but I think three years from now we definitely will,” Musk said during a Q&A at the competition. “So figure three years from now, we’ll at least have a couple miles […] now then you can really move.”

Musk also entertained the possibility of starting a new engineering competition around The Boring Co’s main mission: Tunnelling.

“We could maybe do a tunnelling competition, that might be good,” Musk said. “We’ll consider a tunnelling competition,” he concluded after a few seconds of thought.

“I think a tunnelling thing would be pretty exciting,” Musk said later in response to a follow-up question by one …

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