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Elon Musk pushes ahead with his tunnel venture

Boring machine
The tunnel boring machine nicknamed “Godot” sits in a below-ground chamber. Elon Musk reportedly acquired the pre-owned machine from L.A. Metro. (Elon Musk via Instagram)

One of billionaire Elon Musk’s lesser-known ventures is taking the spotlight with word that The Boring Company is looking into digging a rapid-transit tunnel between Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

That’s not all: Musk says the company is putting the finishing touches on a second tunneling machine, which will be nicknamed Line-Storm as a tribute to a Robert Frost poem. The first machine is named Godot, after the Samuel Beckett play. It’s being employed to dig a tunnel in Hawthorne, Calif., where Musk’s SpaceX rocket venture is headquartered.

Musk is even selling Boring Company hats. More than 6,400 of them, at last report.

In June, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla estimated that he spent only about 2 percent of his working time on The Boring Company, which focuses on lowering the cost of tunneling to facilitate high-speed underground transit. He must have saved up a lot of that time for this week.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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