Introducing Elon Musk's Hyperloop

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August 12 (Bloomberg) -- Bloomberg's Ashlee Vance reports on Elon Musk's latest venture called the "Hyperloop" that will transport people from one destination to another through tubes. He speaks with Jon Erlichman on Bloomberg Television's "Bloomberg West." (Source: Bloomberg)

Live from peer three in san francisco, welcome to bloomberg west, we cover the global technology and media companies reshaping our world.

I'm jon erlichman in for emily chang, our focus is on invasion, technology and the future of business.

Let's get straight to the rundown.

Elon musk reveals his plan for hyperloop, going across land at 800 miles an hour.

If that sounds unlikely, we'll hear from musk himself on how he achieves the impossible.

Are we weeks away from a brand-new iphone?

Apple may be planning september 10 as the launch date for the new device.

Could we finally be seeing the lower cost version?

And microsoft co-founder bill gates has critical words for google.

Find out what he says the search giant is doing wrong when it comes to changing the world for the better.

First the lead, after weeks of hype, billionaire elon musk has reveals plans for his travel system called the hyperloop.

Musk claims the system would let someone travel from san francisco to los angeles in a half hour and more vimetally friendly way than trains, planes, or cars.

Here is how it works.

A traveler rides in a pod that sits on a cushion of air in an elevated tunnel.

Skis on the bottom will help push it to its destination, it may seem far fetched, there is a report complete with detailed instructions on how to make this a reality.

It would actually feel like being in an airplane.

There would be initial acceleration and once you're traveling at speed, you wouldn't really notice the speed at all.

It would just be extremely smooth like you're riding on a cushion of air really.

Musk says the capsules will depart every 30 seconds and carry 28 people each.

He says it would only cost $6 billion for a passenger only, $10 billion if the pods transport cars.

The plans will be open source because musk is too busy running his companies to take on this project.

We're joined by ashley vance who spoke with musk about the hyperloop.

Ashley, good of you to join us.

Why is elon doing this, putting this proposal forward now?

Well, i think his biggest concern is the california high speed rail system which he thinks is too expensive and too slow and too impractical.

Elon gets bent out of shape when he sees people trying things that he thinks are poorly engineered.

This is his answer for that.

And obviously a lot of thought and energy has been put into this, not just elon, but his teams, i would imagine, companies like space x and tesla.

He told you he has too much on his plate to make a go of it himself.

Tell us more about that.

Yeah, he just had a press conference where he said he changed his mind.

I had been talking to him all of the last couple days and last night and he said he would open source the plans just as you mentioned and turn it over to someone else.

On this press conference that he just had, he thinks he will build a prototype at least to prove it can be done.

He has about 12 people helping him on this.

What is going to go into that and how should we think of this project?

Is this an elon musk project or a tesla or spacex project, billions of dollars are required to really make this a reality.

That's right.

It sounded like he hadn't slept a lot since yesterday.

I'm not sure exactly what is going on yet.

He said he would build this prototype.

He didn't think it would be a proper company behind it and he has talked in the past about this maybe being folded under tesla if nobody else developed the technology.

It just sounds like elon wants to prove to people it can happen and then make accelerate somebody else getting behind it by building a prototype and showing it can be done.

He had first talked a little bit about this idea when he spoke to you as part of a previous piece for business-week.

Tell us about what interests him, what drives him when it comes to engineering and technology that he would want to go ahead and put energy into this?

It's got to be more than just being truffed with the california high speed rail system.

Yeah, he seems to be this guy that wants to make the big leaps forward in technology.

He lives in los angeles half the time and he is grousing about the traffic there and would like to put some of his businesses in solving the commuting issues in l.a. just in general, he gets frustrated by things that seem to take too slow.

He was obsessed with this idea of building a supersonic all-electric jet.

He is trying to push the limits of where the technology can go.

He flies from l.a. to silicon valley, every week, twice a week, back and forth.

You can sort of see in his head, he wants a way to do that quicker and more easily even than his private yet.

Right, and very quickly, not to say he isn't realistic about the challenges that could stand in his way including on the security side?

Yeah, he had given a little short shrift how long it would cost and how long it would take to build.

He dodged those a little bit more so than the technical details.

All right.

Ashley, fascinating story that you put ahead of this big announcement.

Ashley vance joining us via skype.

How far fetched is this idea?

Colorado-based e.t. 3 has been working on its own hyperloop project and has been cited as a possible model for musk.

For more on the company and how it is from offering the service, i'm joined by the chief operating officer.

Nick, you recently met with musk.

Tell us about that meeting and what you guys talked about, what the point of it was.

Yeah, we met with musk about three weeks ago and he reached out to us.

The state of journalism and everything got combined, we got mixed together with hyperloop.

You can cause us two, it's not a loop.

He reached out to us.

There was a meeting.

There was a lot of talk about going fast in tubes and he told us, he started the meeting off talking about the high speed rail, kind of just reported on, and he wants to save the state of california.

And so do we.

We're getting real close.

I got to say, thank you, mr.

Musk, for just having the courage to talk about the legalization of innovation in transportation.

I think that's the key issue is that there are technicalologists now that -- technicalologist now that can solve our transportation problems.

We have to let them loose.

Your company, e.t. 3, it stands for evacuated tube technicalologist.

People over the last hour and into the evening, will see a lot of videos, pictures of how this might work.

Tell us as simply as you can what it is you're hoping to achieve.

So as simply as possible, e.t. 3, it's a vehicle the sides of a -- size of a car but shaped like a red bull condition.

It is on an evacuated tube.

There is no air resistance, there is no rolling resistance.

It's space travel conditions on earth.

So you enter through an air lock and then you're accelerated at one g of acceleration which people are quite comfortable with, the same linear electricity motors that accelerate superman the ride at six flags, that's 4.2 gs of acceleration.

We start out at 400 miles an hour, but eventually this will all be networked.

There are key differences between hyperloop and e.t. 3. to build on what you guys are focused on, i believe you would like to do a big demo of this, like a three-mile demo -- exactly.

Guys build the demo and that's what we're about to do.

We need to build three miles of e.t. 3. the first mile, you accelerate up to 400 miles an hour.

The middle hour we coast and show that the capsule can switch lanes.

We decelerate and recapture that energy.

We'll open it up as a ride.

Do it red carpet style and open it up, i want it to be like 20 bucks and make it affordable for everyone to come and experience this.

You have a 5-year-old and his grandma ride this, the world changes.

Ashley vance of bloomberg businessweek was highlighting some of the comments we hurt from elon musk.

Maybe now that he has been thinking a lot about this, he does want to be involved, even if he is busy with some of his other projects now.

What does that mean for you guys?

Does that mean there is competition or collaboration?

Elon would be the ultimate e.t. 3 licensee.

He talked about open source, it's an open consortium.

That's why we have the business model.

All of the existing manufacturing ca missty and the now how, they're already there.

The market just needs to be opened up so they can spread, you know.

Before we go, i mean, when you talk about the patents behind smart phones and tablets, what about the technology behind all of this?

Who has it, what do you guys have, what does that mean in terms of the potential future?

So, yeah, we have our patents, the original e.t. 3 patent that was issued in 1999. just this march, we issued another two patents in the cooling and on the switch, the lane switching capabilities of the capsules.

That extends it another 19 years.

The high temperature super conductor magnet, with a little bit of liquid nitrogen, it will levitate the capsule, not in a vacuum, china rolled out the red carpet for our c.e.o. who has been on tv today and a lot of channels and got them started.

Their students studied it in china right now.

We have pictures of the demo.

This idea goes back over 100 years, you know.

So it's finally going to happen, the technology is there and really the only thing in our way right now are the politicians.

We need a framework.

We need to work with them so this technology can happen.

An important part and we'll see how it all plays out, nick, thanks for your time, the c.o.o. from e.t. 3 joining us from los angeles.

Does hyperloop sound crazy to you?

Elon musk doesn't care.

Hear how he achieves the impossible coming up.

First, is a new iphone coming our way in a few weeks?

Will it be innovative enough to silence apple critics?

That's next on "bloomberg west." ?

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