Hyperloop or hyperbole? Musk promises NY-DC run in 29 mins

July 21, 2017
New York and Washington are separated by some 330 kilometers (200 miles)—currently a two hours 45 minute journey by train or one hour 15 minutes flying

US entrepreneur Elon Musk said Thursday he'd received tentative approval from the government to build a conceptual "hyperloop" system that would blast passenger pods down vacuum-sealed tubes from New York to Washington at near supersonic speeds.

"Just received verbal govt approval for The Boring Company to build an underground NY-Phil-Balt-DC Hyperloop. NY-DC in 29 mins," the flamboyant CEO of Tesla and SpaceX tweeted, using abbreviations for New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington DC.

New York and Washington are separated by some 330 kilometers (200 miles)—currently an approximately three-hour journey by train or one hour and 15 minutes flying.

The US Department of Transportation forwarded queries for comment to the White House, which offered a statement that neither confirmed nor outright dismissed the bombastic announcement.

"We have had promising conversations to date, are committed to transformative infrastructure projects, and believe our greatest solutions have often come from the ingenuity and drive of the private sector," the statement said.

Experts however said the proposed system would likely require approvals from numerous departments as well as local and state authorities before construction work could begin.

Facing a barrage of skepticism, Musk, who has been known to over-promise in his announcements, clarified: "Still a lot of work needed to receive formal approval, but am optimistic that will occur rapidly," urging people to lobby their representatives.

Musk's involvement in the proposed project is for now limited to building the tunnels, and it is not yet clear which firm he plans to partner with to handle the pod vehicles.

But several companies are now exploring the market, including Northeast Maglev, Hyperloop One and Hyperloop Transportation Technologies.

Beyond the Hyperloop system, Musk has made plans to send two private citizens around the Moon and land an unmanned spacecraft on Mars by 2020.

Earlier this month he vowed to build the world's largest battery in Australia with a 100 megawatt-hour capacity, or enough to power 30,000 homes.

Explore further: Musk says government likes plan for high-speed tunnels

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nearboston
2.1 / 5 (15) Jul 21, 2017
TRANSLATION:
Elin Musk has come up with aanother way of guaranteeing Uncle Sam continues supporting his opulent lifestyle for at least another decade.

This fraud would be flipping burgers if not for the massive subsidies he gets on his coal powered vehicles.
CubicAdjunct747
2 / 5 (12) Jul 21, 2017
total SCAM ! just curious what would a 9mm do to 1/4 inch of steel wall and this much vacuum, how big would the hole actually get? Any speculation?
Yirmin_Snipe
2 / 5 (12) Jul 21, 2017
Why waste money on something so stupid.
windjammer99
2.2 / 5 (10) Jul 21, 2017
The economics of this just don't make sense to me. I live in DC. For $25 I can take a bus to NY (4 hours), $80 for a train (3.5 hours) and for $120 a plane (1.25 hours). This would take decades to build (and he'll need a lot more than a verbal agreement) and would cost billions and billions IF they could get it to work. A ticket would have to cost thousands to recoup the investment and be profitable. This is pure fantasy to drum up headlines and build the myth of Musk.
sascoflame
2.4 / 5 (11) Jul 21, 2017
One way to demonstrate this is a con is to make Musk create a vacuum in 100 miles of Hyperloop tube. The largest vacuum on earth is the 27 mile tunnel at the large hadron collider. Creating a tunnel in impenetrable is much easier than in a steel tube. If he can't do that throw him in prison.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.7 / 5 (6) Jul 22, 2017
"The Tesla founder says his Boring Company has technology that can dig faster than traditional methods, reinforcing tunnel walls as it digs"

-It is obvious that many of musks projects are directly related to his overarching goal of establishing self-sustaining colonies on mars. His hyperloop tunnel will operate at mars atmospheric pressure.

Robotic tunnel borers can be lifted with his proposed ITS rocket which is 12 meters (39 feet) wide. Hordes of excavator robots can prepare entry points and remove tailings.

All he needs to do is get his hands on some Operation Plowshare-type nuclear explosives for creating habitable voids and reservoirs underground.

But with tandem tunnels, one can be used for habitation while the 2nd would serve for transport and utilities. Whole tunnel fields could provide space for cities of unlimited size.
Cont>
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.3 / 5 (7) Jul 22, 2017
Imagine if instead of mining raw materials here on earth which are then carted off and refined to make building materials for use somewhere else, that we simply inhabited the mines.

We will be digging mines on mars at any rate to support large colonies and we will absolutely be using borers to do this. So living in them makes the most sense by far, and it explains musks preoccupation with developing this tech here on earth.

Re nukes, these borers will need to be nuclear-powered. Reactors will be the main source of power for these colonies. Lucky for us we just happen to have 8000+ tons of fissiles laying about, and have spent the last 60 years refining the tech needed to power cities and large vehicles with them.

Coincidence or no?
TheGhostofOtto1923
2 / 5 (5) Jul 22, 2017
Some even suspect that nuke borers have been at work beneath the surface of this planet for decades (see taos hum and the denver airport), creating autonomous, interconnected communities as a hedge against mega-disaster.

You know, the kind of disaster which is prompting these mars colonies to begin with?
thisisminesothere
1.7 / 5 (6) Jul 22, 2017
[q-It is obvious that many of musks projects are directly related to his overarching goal of establishing self-sustaining colonies on mars.

That is brilliant, I never thought about that before, I could totally see that being the ultimate goal here.
windjammer99
3 / 5 (4) Jul 22, 2017
I just don't see this as a feasible Mars project as others do. No one is claiming we can bore tunnels (let alone maintenance of equipment) by using robots. The cost to undertake this kill the project out of the gates. And there are a host of other issues. My grandchildren (my children are not born yet) will pass away of old age without there being a subway on Mars. It is good to aspire but you have to keep it reasonable.
This is just Musk trying to drum up business for his company here on earth and pretend he is Tony Stark.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.4 / 5 (5) Jul 22, 2017
No one is claiming we can bore tunnels (let alone maintenance of equipment) by using robots
And how do you know this? And what makes you think they would tell you if they were?

I'm suggesting there is strong evidence and logic for nuke borers as central to mars colonization.
The cost to undertake this kill the project out of the gates
Musk wants 1M people on mars in 20 years. What do You think that will cost? Hint- less than you think.

We are on the verge of a robot revolution. Robots building robots. We already have prototypes on mars which have been operating successfully for years.

Machines love mars much more than they do earth.

"I love the desert because it's clean." - Lawrence of Arabia
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (4) Jul 22, 2017
We dig 1000s of miles of tunnels and mines here on earth every year. Its a very mature technology. We even built a famous prototype
https://www.nei.o...pository

There are also all of these
http://www.tenfou...n-under/

You can begin to speculate on what tunnel cities might look like. They could be laid out much like city streets are today. Subways could be beneath common commercial area tunnels with housing tunnels above that. Outlying tunnels could be farms with skylights for natural light.

Imagine walking through your favorite mall and then imagine again that it is now beneath the Martian surface.
ShotmanMaslo
3.9 / 5 (7) Jul 23, 2017
I just don't see this as a feasible Mars project as others do.


Underground spaces will be crucial for a Mars colony due to protection from radiation. So there will be some serious digging equipment needed no matter what. I am not sure if hyperloop is feasible but Musk being interested in tunneling technology makes complete sense.
unrealone1
5 / 5 (1) Jul 23, 2017
@TheGhostofOtto1923, Thank's for the links.
Do a search for Longyou Caves, these caves "tunnels" are around 10,000 years old.
unrealone1
5 / 5 (1) Jul 23, 2017
8 Mysterious Underground Cities
http://www.histor...d-cities
TransmissionDump
4 / 5 (8) Jul 23, 2017
Elon dares to dream. There will be knockers of course but great things come from those individuals who hold a vision and display tenacity. Many failures happen before a success.
There's a lesson in that for all of us.
windjammer99
2.6 / 5 (5) Jul 23, 2017
Ghostofotto1923 I know that no one is saying we can create tunnels without humans using only robots because no one is saying we can create tunnels without humans using only robots. If you can point me to a project here on earth that did achieve that, I will thank you for teaching me something. Similarly please point me to one of those nuclear powered bore machines that you mentioned. (They don't exist.) Under international treaty, nuclear explosives can't be used there. Fantasy is fun, but recognize it as fantasy.
Musk is just a self-promoting fraud. You don't have to buy the hype hook, line and sinker like a sucker. When he jotted down the 'idea' for the Hyperloop (which was taken from the 1970s show 'Space 1999') he didn't offer any of the engineering or technical aspects to make it work, because he hasn't a clue. The battery technology in his cars comes from Panasonic.
Let's meet back here in 20 years and see how close we are to that figure of 1M living on Mars.
TheGhostofOtto1923
3.4 / 5 (5) Jul 23, 2017
Does musk's superrocket yet exist? Will it eventually exist? Of course.

Do nuclear subs exist? Do conventional borers exist? And is it possible to power them with reactors? Of course.

If you had searched you would have found this thing
http://12160.info...A1149462

- Is it real? Who knows? The point is, they can certainly be constructing existing tech, and they can certainly operate autonomously.
TheGhostofOtto1923
2.3 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2017
Under international treaty, nuclear explosives can't be used there
Of course they can and they will if necessary. Treaties are modified when the need is great. And because of existential threats to our species and our civilization it is imperative that we spread ourselves around the solar system as soon as possible.

Fissiles will make this possible. We cannot do it without reactors and explosives. Which probably explains why the world staged a phony cold war in order to produce the 10k tons of it sitting about just waiting to be used.

And if a world-ending threat were imminent we have the capability of even building fleets of these
https://en.m.wiki...pulsion)

-for large-scale evacuation. Lucky for us we have the power source and the tech to do it. We conducted 100s of explosive tests. We have run 100s of vessels and 1000s of reactors of all types for decades. To what end?

This is not coincidence this is foresight.
Zzzzzzzz
4 / 5 (8) Jul 23, 2017
TRANSLATION:
Elin Musk has come up with aanother way of guaranteeing Uncle Sam continues supporting his opulent lifestyle for at least another decade.

This fraud would be flipping burgers if not for the massive subsidies he gets on his coal powered vehicles.

Is there no respite anywhere from fecal regurgitation?
TransmissionDump
3.7 / 5 (6) Jul 23, 2017
windjammer
I didn't think he personally has to offer any tech or engineering aspects, all he has to do is present a vision then pay other people a shitload of money and they nut out all the tech to make it happen. He's done it with the falcon 9 re-usable rockets. The blokes blew a few up to start with but they finally nailed it.

We'll probably witness quite a few hyperloop prototype mishaps, tunnel collapses, tube pod accidents etc... but he'll keep at it and eventually get it right. I hope the bloke goes down in the pages of history for being one of these who are ahead of his time and a benefit to humanity.
windjammer99
3 / 5 (6) Jul 23, 2017
GhostsOtto, your thought now is that Musk's subway between New York and DC is part of some sort of evacuation plan if the earth becomes uninhabitable? I feel compelled to point out to you that Mars is far more uninhabitable than any potential environmental disaster would make things here on earth. Wouldn't it therefor be easier (and make more sense) to build whatever Mars bunkers here on earth for that doomsday scenario? You're engaging in kooky fantasy and buying into hype.
We landed on the moon nearly 50 years ago. Twenty years from now we'll have as many people living on Mars as we do living on the moon now, far less than the 1M you talked about.
Waaalt
2.3 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2017
Musk straight up lied about having 'tentative aproval.'

None of the cities involved had yet to even be approached in even the most preliminary ways about this project or anything like it:

http://wonderfule...rns-lie/
http://fortune.co...company/
http://www.zerohe...laim-yet
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (2) Jul 23, 2017
GhostsOtto, your thought now is that Musk's subway between New York and DC is part of some sort of evacuation plan if the earth becomes uninhabitable?
No but i do believe you have some developmental reading problems perhaps.
I feel compelled to point out to you that Mars is far more uninhabitable than any potential environmental disaster would make things here on earth
An engineered pandemic could end civilisation or collapse ecologies. Ditto with megavolcanos or impactors.

These aren't my conclusions. Do a little research.
Wouldn't it therefor be easier (and make more sense) to build whatever Mars bunkers here on earth for that doomsday scenario? You're engaging in kooky fantasy and buying into hype
Again the dangers we face and the need to establish off-world colonies because of them, aren't my fantasies dweeb. They're the conclusions of many prominent scientists and thinkers lots smarter than you.

How come you don't know this?
TheGhostofOtto1923
1 / 5 (2) Jul 23, 2017
Musk straight up lied about having 'tentative aproval.'
Anybody who knows anything about large construction projects knows that there are dozens of submittals and reviews and inspections from dozens of agencies and individuals during the course of design and construction.

I guess that doesn't mean you.

This includes local, state, and federal bureaucracies, politicians, unions, insurance underwriters, financiers, action groups, watchdog agencies, lawyers, mobs of concerned citizens, etc.

"But it's still unclear what "verbal approval" means. On Thursday, the Department of Transportation referred Business Insider to a White House spokesperson who said there have been "promising conversations" about the project."
windjammer99
3.4 / 5 (5) Jul 23, 2017
Ah Ghostotto, you aren't getting it. An earth with an engineered pandemic or mega volcanos (or even Godzilla) would still be far more hospitable than Mars. As you said, do the research. Given that, it would be easier and wiser to build those sealed off bunkers here, would it not? Your kooky plan is like a farmer having a bad crop year so he relocates to the rim of an active volcano. Next, and as you said do the research, a Mars colony would not be self sustainable but dependent on the earth. If the earth dies because of that mega volcano that keeps you up at night, so do any Mars colonies. Finally, saying your kooky fantasies are not your own do not make them any less kooky or in some way cogent. Put down the comic books. This thread has moved so far away from its intent I'll leave it here and let you have the sputtering last word talking about you saw on Star Trek and the kooky conspiracy websites. And no, a hyperloop subway between DC and New York doesn't make sense.
Parsec
3 / 5 (3) Jul 23, 2017
It is an open question if this can be made to work in an economics sense, but there would certainly be enough traffic between DC and NYC. It is certainly true that there are much less expensive ways to travel between the cities, but these cities are 2 of the biggest wealth centers in the US, and the clear advantages of a 30 minute transit time (faster for later versions) certainly would support a pretty high ticket price.

Time may not be money, but wasted time can certainly be wasted money. And at the hourly rate some people's wasted time translates into money, even a $1000 ticket would be cheap.
EmceeSquared
2.3 / 5 (3) Jul 24, 2017
As with the rest of Musk's outrageously ambitious ventures, like launching and landing reusable rockets over and over to supply space, and singlehandedly forcing the world's carmakers to go electric, and commodifying leased solar roofs - this one is pulling us all along an exciting path. And actually pulling us, because he actually does it - the mewling trolls in this discussion of course notwithstanding.

Yes, the Hyperloop is part of Musk's Mars colonization vision. And yes, an NYC/DC trip in under a half hour will have plenty of customers even at $1000 a ride. But sooner than Mars, if not as exciting (but more exciting than NYC/DC), looms a trans Atlantic Hyperloop. If it can go supersonic in the extremely rarefied medium in the tube, a 2 hour NYC/London shot at 3000 KPH. About 1500 US/UK-EU 7-10h flights daily could be covered by just over 100 tubes at 2h across. Bundles from Boston, NYC, DC, Norfolk and Miami to London, Paris, Madrid and Hamburg.

Bring it on!
TheGhostofOtto1923
3 / 5 (2) Jul 24, 2017
Ghostotto, you aren't getting it. An earth with an engineered pandemic or mega volcanos (or even Godzilla) would still be far more hospitable than Mars. As you said, do the research
No, underground colonies would be no more inhospitable than your local mall where I assume you spend much of your time.

We spend most of our time in artificial environments. Nuclear geoengineering can provide large habitable space and also condition it very nicely. This is not sci-fi only sci. But it still requires an imagination to appreciate.

Something that musk and hawking have but you lack apparently?
Eikka
1 / 5 (1) Jul 24, 2017
Do nuclear subs exist? Do conventional borers exist? And is it possible to power them with reactors? Of course.


Do you remember what is the major difference of a nuclear submarine?

It's in water. A nuclear powerplant needs prodigious amounts of cooling to operate, because it's a heat engine, which would be extremely difficult to run completely underground even on Earth. On Mars it's even more difficult because the atmospheric pressure is so low that air cooling the reactor is ineffective. The tunnel borer would run into a nuclear meltdown inside the hole it was digging.

You need to build the powerplant above ground, which is how tunnel borers and the largest diggers/excavators actually operate. They're electric machines, and workers build powerlines behind them as they move. That makes the prospect of sending autonomous borers to Mars a non-starter because you have to rocket all the extension cables with them - millions of tons of stuff.
Eikka
1 / 5 (1) Jul 24, 2017
To make the point clear, think of a human explorer in the Arctic digging a snow tunnel. It's -50 C outside, but the person makes about 400 Watts of heat working hard in an enclosed space inside a snowbank, and despite being surrounded by frozen stuff, the air temperature inside the cavity soon rises to +10...15 degrees C and the guy may actually get a heat stroke if he doesn't undress.

Now imagine pushing a 50 Megawatt nuclear reactor in a hole under a mile of insulating rock, with an atmospheric pressure of 0.6% of Earth normal pressure. There's basically no air, so fans won't work, and even if they did work you'd have no means to carry the hot air all the way out of the tunnel.

So it's the complete opposite problem of building a hyperloop tunnel. To make it work you'd have to pressurize the tunnel to get enough mass flow to carry the heat away, as well as the tracks and other infrastructure to carry the waste rock away, but where do you get the materials and how?
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 24, 2017
Do you remember what is the major difference of a nuclear submarine?

It's in water
Do you remember all the times in the past when you assume I make this stuff up, that I always humiliate you?

"In terms of heating requirements, when spacecraft require more than 100 kW for power, fission systems are much more cost effective than RTGs. Over the past few decades, several fission reactors have been proposed, but these fission systems haven't been utilized in US space projects as prominently as radioisotope systems have. The Soviet Union, however, launched 31 BES-5 low power fission reactors in their RORSAT satellites utilizing thermoelectric converters between 1967 and 1988. Shortly after, the Soviet Union developed TOPAZ reactors, which utilize thermionic converters instead. In 2008, NASA announced plans to utilize a small fission power system to be used on the surface of the moon and Mars, and began testing "key" technologies for it to come to fruition."
Cont>
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 24, 2017
Reactors WILL be used in space and on other planets and moons where there is no water. Reactors in ships and subs have given us experience on how these integrated systems can function in airless environments in close proximity to people.

"A series of investigations in the 1960s and the 1970s established the possibility of a
melting drill or tunneler with a free wandering ability called a 'subterrene' in work done in the
national laboratory of Los Alamos in New Mexico. Their configuration was nuclear powered,
thermally penetrating rock and then forcing the melt outward to harden in a splash-profiled glass tunnel, removing the need for hauling muck or indeed for supplying the tunneler with most consumables.
cont>
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 24, 2017
"The rock melter envisaged in the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory publication LA-4547
[3]would put out about 500 watts per square centimeter. These heats, though impressive, are
manifestly survivable..."

-Oh Im sorry is this a little too extreme for you (but not for los alamos)? Nuclear borers would still be in direct contact with their tunnel walls and can transfer waste heat to the surrounding rock thru conduction. They can also use remote radiators on the surface. Spacecraft using reactors will have radiators.
cont>

But Im just speculating. I'm sure the people who are designing these things as we speak, are being more creative.

You also have to ask yourself how do conventional borers which generate the same power dissipate their own waste heat -?
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 24, 2017
Russian reactors in space (no water)
"This system would consist of a space nuclear power and the matrix of ion engines. "...Hot inert gas temperature of 1500 °C from the reactor turns turbines. The turbine turns the generator and compressor, which circulates the working fluid in a closed circuit. The working fluid is cooled in the radiator. The generator produces electricity for the same ion (plasma) engine..." According to him, the propulsion will be able to support human mission to Mars..."
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Hey eikka

"A 1988 Texas A&M study outlined plans for a slightly different model of lunar tunnel boring machine.

"The Texas A&M "Lunar Tunneler" would employ a "mechanical head to shear its way through the lunar material while creating a rigid ceramic-like lining". Essentially, this kind of machine would be a hybrid, mechanical TBM (Tunnel Boring Machine) that incorporates elements of the nuclear powered subselene. Although the machine would be nuclear powered it would have a mechanical cutter head that would bore through the lunar subsurface.

"Just behind the cutter head would be a "heating section" that would,
"melt a layer of lunar material within the excavated tunnel...""
Cont>
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
- which does appear to be based on an actual study
https://ntrs.nasa...90007687

And

https://www.googl...eWFBWbtQ

- The melted liner concept might be what musk is referring to when he "says his Boring Company has technology that can dig faster than traditional methods, reinforcing tunnel walls as it digs"
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Do you remember all the times in the past when you assume I make this stuff up, that I always humiliate you?


You forgot to add "in my imagination".

The reason why reactors and RTGs work in space is because they're in free space where they can radiate heat away. That won't work in a tunnel underground. If you have no medium to use for cooling, your equipment will overheat.

which does appear to be based on an actual study


That study outlines a borer that operates at the temperature of molten regolith because no mechanical design (drill) would work reliably enough. It pushes through rock by turning it into liquid. The actual feasibility of it would be in the realm of "50 years in the future if the material science takes a quantum leap", or pure sci-fi.

Indeed as the paper itself points out:
it is evident that continuing development is necessary in order to satisfy the specifications
required for a melting head.

Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
And the heat rejection system mentioned in the study is a radiator on the surface, and the waste heat is transferred into it by a truck carrying molten sodium to and from the borer like buckets of ice.

The second problem is that the entire tunnel borer aside for the melting head operates at 400 - 800 K temperatures throughout, hot enough that it almost glows red, so computers and electronics won't work because materials such as plastic wire insulations turn to charred gunk. Mechanical parts such as wheel bearings also run into troubles because lubrication will vaporize or burn - but the study shrugs that off as a minor concern.

The issue of additional coolant was not addressed here due to the small amount
involved and secondary nature of the issue.


So, practical feasibility? Slim to none.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Or as the paper itself puts it:

Detailed design of any of the following components is beyond the scope of this report


In other words, the idea of a nuclear powered lunar tunnel borer is just so much handwaving.

Another problem they mention, but just handwave away is the fact that a 20 MW reactor will leave the tunnel walls radioactive as heck, so they can't actually be used by people.

It is hoped that the regolith will not remain activated for a long period of time but no study has been made of the issue at this point
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Sorry I just cant stop

"From the findings presented in this report, it is concluded that a mechanical Lunar
Tunneler is a viable and efficient technique for creating large amounts of underground
living space. An SP-100 high speed atomic reactor is the best choice for supplying the
power requirements in this application because of its compactness, longevity under adverse
conditions, and ability to provide ample power for lunar tunneling. The completely mechanical
cutterhead, with twenty-six disc cutters, would be able to shear its way through
the lunar material without using the large amounts of power required by a melting tunneler."

-Texas A&M dtd 1988. Gosh I wonder what theyve accomplished in the last 30 years?

And I wonder if perhaps musk has read this too?
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
20 MW reactor will leave the tunnel walls radioactive as heck, so they can't actually be used by people
Gee I wonder what they do with all that radiation from S6G naval reactorwhich have a thermal output of about 130 megawatts? Is that why the russians sink them in the north sea?
hot enough that it almost glows red, so computers and electronics won't work because materials such as plastic wire insulations turn to charred gunk
"Silicon Carbide devices have been
field tested to temperatures in excess
of 550 °C, with some literature
reporting transistor operation up to
650 °C, and SiC ICs have been
demonstrated
AVAILABLE TODAY
SiC
Gallium Nitride devices are mainly
discrete transistors, which have been
shown to operate up to 600 °C, with a
theoretical operating temperature
higher than SiC"

-20 more seconds and Im sure I could find even higher-
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Gee I wonder what they do with all that radiation from S6G naval reactorwhich have a thermal output of about 130 megawatts?


Water is an effective shield for radiation. The paper doesn't even consider the reactor shielding required to make the borer man-safe.

The whole idea is ridiculous: the system depends on a steady stream of dump trucks to carry cool sodium to the borer, and haul molten regolith to the surface. If the trucks stop, the borer overheats and self-destructs even if it tried to shut down, because it's full of molten rock and surrounded by glowing hot regolith.

So you must design an extremely reliable dump truck that has to survive in an environment that melts most metals, carrying radioactive lava.

And they figured the truck would run on lead acid batteries.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
That won't work in a tunnel underground. If you have no medium to use for cooling, your equipment will overheat
Uh they are wasting a lot of heat melting rock. Since they appear to be relatively competent I would suspect that the overall heat generated to heat disposed of would be equal, or else they wouldnt have said

""From the findings presented in this report, it is concluded that a mechanical Lunar
Tunneler is a viable and efficient technique for creating large amounts of underground
living space."
Water is an effective shield for radiation. The paper doesn't even consider the reactor shielding required to make the borer man-safe
Doesnt need to be man-safe. Its robotic.
The whole idea is ridiculous
Not according to NASA, Texas A&M, the USAF... DARPA perhaps? Musk's The Boring Company perhaps?
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Uh they are wasting a lot of heat melting rock.


And? You think the molten rock is cool?

Since they appear to be relatively competent


I disagree. It's not an actual feasibility study, but a concept study. They're just throwing wild ideas that sound plausible if you don't look too closey.

-20 more seconds and Im sure I could find even higher-


A single transistor does not suffice - you need all the other components as well, and insulated wires, motors, joints, hydraulics, mechanics... I mean, a simple coiled spring will turn soft at 800 K.

Texas A&M dtd 1988. Gosh I wonder what theyve accomplished in the last 30 years?


Probably nothing, as the original point was just so much hot air. Your problem is that you take concept speculation at face value and treat it as actually existing technology, but we know you're a bit of a loony with a penchant for conspiracy theories already.

TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
A single transistor does not suffice - you need all the other components as well, and insulated wires, motors, joints, hydraulics, mechanics...
Like I said Im not going to waste time looking up high temp electronics for you. Theyre used in oil and gas drilling, munitions, etc.

But consider why they would rate transisters at 650C if they were not meant to be used in systems of the same tolerance...?
and treat it as actually existing technology
Careful. THEY say its all existing tech circa 1988. Again you make the mistake of assuming I make these things up. Youre denigrating REAL scientists and engineers.

And YOU thought that reactors needed water for cooling.

Makes you look a little silly.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Doesnt need to be man-safe. Its robotic.


They're proposing to push the molten regolith through the borer right next to the hot reactor where it gets irradiated and activated by neutrons, and then use the same regolith to line the tunnel with glass. That glass will be radioactive.

The actual tunnel will be radioactive - not usable by people.

Careful. THEY say its all existing tech circa 1988.


No they didn't. That's just you.

What they're actually saying is, "borers exists, nuclear reactors exists", and then proposing to mix the two with no real plan or study of how it would actually work - just a bunch of conceptual handwaving.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Like I said Im not going to waste time looking up high temp electronics for you. Theyre used in oil and gas drilling, munitions, etc.


They're actively cooled in those applications.

But consider why they would rate transisters at 650C if they were not meant to be used in systems of the same tolerance...?


Again you read what wasn't said or written. They're not rating transistors at 650 C for any application - they've tested them to operate at that temperature. There's very few practical applications for transistors at such high temperatures at the moment because the rest of the system components can't follow suit - only some niche cases such as sensors with a limited number of parts actually exposed to the heat.

The high temperature tolerance is important in another sense, because the lifespan of the component halves for every 6 C increase in operating temperature. The part won't operate for long at 650 C.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
That glass will be radioactive.

The actual tunnel will be radioactive - not usable by people
Nuclear sub reactors produce much more power and radiation. Maybe they are shielded. What do you think?

No they didn't. That's just you
Well they did say

"An underlying design objective was to use as much existing technology as possible in
the design in order to lower cost and minimize down-time."

-and I didnt see anything in the report which flagged tech not available 30 years ago.

Its like saying that the tech didnt exist to build the ISS back when they began designing it. Of course they needed to put it together in space and see how it operated.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
They're actively cooled in those applications
-and they wouldnt be cooled in this application as well?
There's very few practical applications for transistors at such high temperatures at the moment because the rest of the system components can't follow suit
Youre guessing.

"On the high end, "laboratory" operation of discrete semiconductor devices has been reported at temperatures as high as about +700°C (for a diamond Schottky diode) and 650°C (for a SiC MOSFET). Integrated circuits based on Si and GaAs have operated to +400−500°C. Si ICs have been reported to operate at +300°C for 1000 hours or longer."

-Like I said, seconds.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Nuclear sub reactors produce much more power and radiation. Maybe they are shielded. What do you think?


Yes. They're shielded by surrounding them in water. Are you suggesting to line the tunnels with lead so people can live in them safely?

Well they did say


That's completely different from saying "the technology exists".

-and I didnt see anything in the report which flagged tech not available 30 years ago.


Again, it's a completely different prospect to say you "have" all the parts, than saying you actually have working plans for a nuclear tunnel borer.

For example, the SP-100 high speed atomic reactor only existed as a prototype, scaled to 2 MWth and the development program got terminated in 1990.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Youre guessing.
...
-Like I said, seconds.


You're not actually proving your claim. You're just quoting more laboratory results for single transistors (discrete semiconductor devices). Can you quote how, say, a wiring harness with connectors will fare at 700 C where the tin that joins the wires to the connectors will melt and the plastic insulator will turn to gas?

-and they wouldnt be cooled in this application as well?


That's the question. How? That point was not answered in the study. The "coolant" for the borer was molten sodium, which is too hot to keep electromechanical parts operational.

TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Can you quote how, say, a wiring harness with connectors will fare at 700 C where the tin that joins the wires to the connectors will melt and the plastic insulator will turn to gas?
Yes.

"It is worth noting that gallium arsenide (GaAs) and
related alloy (e.g., AlGaAs) device technologies, which
are commercialized to a much smaller degree than silicon,
are candidates for extending high-temperature operation
somewhat (perhaps an additional 100 C) beyond 300 C.
An excellent summary of issues facing high-temperature
1070 PROCEEDINGS OF THE IEEE, VOL. 90, NO. 6, JUNE 2002
electronics implementation with GaAs/AlGaAs technology
is contained in [16]."

-See [16] for further info. Also table 1 for real world applicatiions. Also consider hypersonic robotic aircraft and missiles, MIRV reentry bombs, oh I dont know...
That's the question. How?
How do they cool the molten liner?
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
There's also a huge difference between a chip or a transistor running at 300 C because of internal heating, vs. trying to have electronics in an environment that gets to 300 C.

Compare and contrast: your laptop CPU gets to about 85 C before it shuts down. Does that mean your laptop will actually function in an 80 C sauna?

TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
You're not actually proving your claim
Im sorry but I dont NEED to. I gave you expert references from 30 years ago who said it was entirely feasible. YOU called THEM loonies "with a penchant for conspiracy theories already". You think you can discredit NASA and Texas A&M because you dont like the source??
There's also a huge difference between a chip or a transistor running at 300 C because of internal heating, vs. trying to have electronics in an environment that gets to 300 C
You didnt read table 1. Page 1072.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
Yes.


You didn't actually answer the question.

How do they cool the molten liner?


With molten sodium. The regolith turns solid at temperatures where the sodum melts.

Im sorry but I dont NEED to. I gave you expert references from 30 years ago who said it was entirely feasible.


You're mis-interpreting their claims and making it out to be much more than what it actually is.

You think you can discredit NASA and Texas A&M because you dont like the source??


I'm not discrediting them - I'm pointing out they don't actually have what you claim they have.

You didnt read table 1.


What table 1?
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
You didn't actually answer the question
Yeah I did.
What table 1?
1) highlight the quote I posted. 2) right click and search google for it 3) no Im not going to give you links for everything I post. I think you need the practice with google.
I'm not discrediting them - I'm pointing out they don't actually have what you claim they have
What THEY claim they have. Repost #3

"From the findings presented in this report, it is concluded that a mechanical Lunar
Tunneler is a viable and efficient technique for creating large amounts of underground
living space."

From 1988.
Eikka
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
You didn't actually answer the question
Yeah I did.
What table 1?
1) highlight the quote I posted. 2) right click and search google for it 3) no Im not going to give you links for everything I post. I think you need the practice with google.


No you didn't. I asked what would happen to a wiring harness at 700 C and you replied by posting an irrelevant quote that didn't answer the question.

This conversation is proving to be fruitless. You're a loony, Otto, and I'm not going to waste my time arguing with loonies.
TheGhostofOtto1923
not rated yet Jul 25, 2017
You didn't actually answer the question
Yeah I did.
What table 1?
1) highlight the quote I posted. 2) right click and search google for it 3) no Im not going to give you links for everything I post. I think you need the practice with google.


No you didn't. I asked what would happen to a wiring harness at 700 C and you replied by posting an irrelevant quote that didn't answer the question.

This conversation is proving to be fruitless. You're a loony, Otto, and I'm not going to waste my time arguing with loonies.
Table 1 gives several real-world applications of systems operating in high and extreme temps.

THATS your answer gutless.

Eikka wants otto to spoon feed him like my poor old Grosmutter boohoo.

Oh and
what would happen to a wiring harness at 700 C
-what makes you think this subselene would need wiring harnesses at 700C? Is this what they call a strawdog?
Lex Talonis
Jul 28, 2017
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