Tesla may be the Elon Musk venture with which we’re most familiar, but the electric car company isn’t his only undertaking. Heck, it’s not even his only transportation project.
The PayPal founder is also boring underground to get us from one place to another at record speeds and rocketing off to space with SpaceX. It’s the confluence of those two that has caught our attention this time.
Musk wants to use the BFR rocket developed for launching off of our planet to transport us around it. The idea would be to load passengers into one of the Big F’n Rockets (off-shore from major coastal cities), blast off into low orbit, circumnavigate the globe at 17,000 miles per hour, and descend again on the other side of the planet.
Take for example a 7,392-mile trip from New York to Shanghai. By jet, it would usually take about 15 hours. Via rocket ship, just 39 minutes. London to Dubai in the same. Sydney to Johannesburg: 37 minutes. LA to Toronto: 24. Most long-distance trips would take less than half an hour, but the rocket would take under an hour to get anywhere on earth from anywhere else.
Enticing, isn’t it? It’s still probably a ways off, to say the least, by which time the enormous safety concerns would hopefully be worked out. But maybe our kids (and Musk’s) will know in their lifetime what it’s like to traverse the globe by rocket.