The team’s coach and its 12 members, who range in age from 11 to 16, were all trapped in the Tham Luang Caves on June 23rd. They entered in good weather, but were unable to escape when heavy rains flooded the cave network. Divers’ discovery of the team—skinny, but alert after ten days in the dark without food—sparked international elation. But rescuers were instantly faced with a new predicament, as freeing the weakened kids, most of whom reportedly don’t know how to swim, would involve guiding them on a treacherous, five-hour-long dive through narrow tunnels. One such trip already claimed the life of an expert diver, ex-navy Seal Saman Kunan, who was delivering oxygen to the boys.
Enter Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk, who seems to have begun working on the rescue effort after a Tweet urging him to do so went viral.
I suspect that the Thai govt has this under control, but I’m happy to help if there is a way to do so
Musk, who trained as a physicist before he became an entrepreneur, offered the services of The Boring Company, his tunnel-building endeavor.
Boring Co has advanced ground penetrating radar & is pretty good at digging holes. Don’t know if pump rate is limited by electric power or pumps are too smal. If so, could dropship fully charged Powerpacks and pumps.
Bloomberg news confirmed that nine Musk-affiliated engineers have are arriving to assist the rescue this weekend.
Some good feedback from cave experts in Thailand. Iterating with them on an escape pod design that might be safe enough to try. Also building an inflatable tube with airlocks. Less likely to work, given tricky contours, but great if it does.