Elon Musk just shared one of his latest ideas, and it's a doozy: he wants to use rockets for international travel.
SpaceX CEO Elon Musk unveiled revised plans to travel to the moon and Mars at a space industry conference today, but he ended his talk with a pretty incredible promise: using that same interplanetary rocket system for long distance travel on Earth. Musk showed a demonstration of the idea on stage, claiming that it will allow passengers to take "most long-distance trips" in just 30 minutes, and go "anywhere on Earth in under an hour" for around the same price of an economy airline ticket.
Curious what that might look like? Take a look at this:
The video shows passengers entering a boat, which then takes them to a nearby SpaceX rocket. As they board, they walk past a sign that says:
NEW YORK CITY to SHANGHAI
DEPARTS AT 7:00 AM
Then the image on the screen changes:
7,392 mi / 11,897 km
"This proposed method of Earth city to Earth city travel would be, by far, the fastest ever created by humanity," writes Sean O'Kane for The Verge. "The ship would reach a speed of about 18,000 miles per hour at its peak, Musk said, which is more than an order of magnitude faster than the Concorde."
We all know Musk has no shortage of ideas, but this one has to be the biggest he's shared in years. Just imagine how many airlines this could put out of business. If the cost per seat really ends up being "about the same as full fare economy in an aircraft," a claim Musk makes clear on Instagram, it could mean major repercussions for the airline industry down the road--similar to what Amazon has done to retail.
Plans for the rocket and spaceship are reportedly theoretical at this point, although Musk reportedly "hopes to begin construction on the rocket in the next six to nine months."
How's that for theoretical?