According to people who have studied influential icons across generations, Elon Musk is the Leonardo Da Vinci or Thomas Edison of the 21stcentury. His multiple inventions have earned him many awards for his work as an innovator and entrepreneur. Additionally, they are the center of debates and discussions among both the general public and business leaders.
Even though not all Musk’s inventions exhibit the same degrees of success, he has been an inventor since his teenage years. His early ideas were based on software and companies in this space. Over time, his vision has evolved into mass transportation and consumer products.
While some of his visions seemed farfetched in their early stages, they’ve turned out to be major successes. Even better, his remarkable track record is enough to mute many critics. His innovations and breakthroughs have helped him attain a net worth of $219 billion.
What has Musk invented so far?
Of course, you must have heard of Musk because of some of his major companies, but there’s more to him than Tesla and SpaceX. In this article, we will walk through a list of Elon Musk’s inventions as of 2022:
1. Electric cars – Tesla Motors
Nowadays, when the word Tesla is mentioned, you can’t help but think of Musk. Similarly, when you talk about Musk, many people relate him to Tesla. Tesla is an electric motor company that’s publicly traded. What’s even more impressive is how the company’s stocks have multiplied over the last few years.
To be exact, Tesla is worth 700% more than it was two and a half years ago. As we write this article, one share goes for about $213. Lagging in its third-quarter results, Tesla missed reaching the expectations of Wall Street. Even so, the company’s revenue was still high at $1.24 billion USD.
There is a significant demand for their cars, especially the latest designs like Model 3. This model boasts of having 200 miles range and is worth around $35k. However, the company still struggles to keep up with demand through manufacturing. As a result, they’ve got a plan to auction shares worth $500 million to generate funding for capital expenditure.
Just like Tesla Motors, SpaceX is another company and invention of Musk. This aerospace company is renowned around the world because of its achievements in this sector. Musk founded SpaceX to cut down the cost of lifting cargo to space. One of its major objectives of SpaceX is also colonization of planet Mars colonization.
Falcon 9 and Falcon 1 rockets owned by this company are designed to be reusable. As a result, this cuts down the cost of making a new one from scratch. So far, the company has managed about six missions taking cargo to the ISS (International Space Station). They have also secured a contract with NASA to transport crew members to and from the space station.
However, they did suffer a setback due to the explosion of Falcon 9 after launching. After that incident, they suspended flights to space and embarked on redesigning the cause of the problem.
Hyperloop is one of Musk’s ambitious projects of all time. He introduced this transportation system nearly a decade ago. The system is built to reduce the commuting time from Los Angeles to San Francisco significantly. Once they finish developing the Hyperloop, commuters will spend almost half an hour traveling between these two cities. This will be faster than taking a flight, allowing you to reach either city faster.
Hyperloop will install the rail system in a tube. The idea is to suppress the air pressure. Theoretically, low pressure means the drag will reduce enabling it to achieve about 800 mph. Meanwhile, the power consumption will drop significantly. The design is still on paper, and the concept is theoretical. However, Hyperloop is still striving to make it a reality.
The first venture into this project is scheduled to start in 2023. It will cover about five miles in Quay Valley, California. However, the greatest drawback of this project is the cost of technology and land. It’s what’s making the project take so long to get implemented.
4. Phone calls based on the web
In 1997, Musk came up with an idea that will allow people to make landline phone calls via their computers. A few years later, he patented the idea (2001). Compared to Skype, his idea was rather straightforward. With his idea, you simply need to find contacts online, click on them and make phone calls. The calls then reach the recipient through a call center.
Musk co-founded SolarCity with his cousin in 2006. Ever since its founding, they have transformed into the second-largest company in this sector throughout the country. SolarCity is the second major provider of solar power in the country with a net revenue of $102 million. While they are situated in California, they also serve exclusive areas in over 10 other states. They’re also a solar power provider in Columbia District.
They are now working on a storage system for solar power. As such, consumers will be able to use solar power not just during the day but at night as well. This company is also working closely with Tesla Motors. They’re striving to create free charging stations for owners of these vehicles traveling between San Francisco and Los Angeles using route 101.
6. X.com or PayPal (e-payment)
Musk was one of the co-founders of X.com, a company that launched in 1999. The company’s focus was email payments and financial services. After a year, X.com unified with Confinity, another software company to create the company we know today as PayPal. However, they later auctioned it and eBay bought it for $1.5 billion in 2002. From this sale, Musk made about $165 million.
7. Zip2 – Digital city guides
Zip2 is the first software company on the Web that Musk founded when it comes to his inventions. He built this company with help from his brother and a loan from their father. It was aimed at the newspaper industry in its quest to help online users with city guides. After considering a merger with City Search and then rejecting it, they sold the company to Compaq in 199 for $307 million. Musk got $22 million from this sale.
8. Blaster game
Before his idea of Mars colonization and electric car inventions, Musk was a video game fanatic. At 12 years old, he designed his first video game. While that’s impressive, he later sold it for $500 to a magazine company. If you are curious about what the game looks and feels like to play, Blaster still exists today. Simply search for it online and you will find a digital version of it.
9. Electric jet
While Musk is yet to officially launch this project, he introduced the project to the world during the symposium of Aero-Astronautics Centennial at MIT. In the Colbert Report, he also shared the idea of having an electric jet with a vertical takeoff.
Musk is also working towards being able to land a supersonic electric jet. The fans of this jet will rely on electric motors to run and propel the aircraft. Thanks to vertical takeoff and landing, airports will use less space since aircraft won’t need runways.
10. Location-specific searches
In the 90s or even before that, it wasn’t a priority to find specific businesses near you. However, this didn’t prevent Musk from coming up with this idea. Maybe he knew we would need this concept in the future. He actually came up with the idea in 1998.
According to Musk, online users will be able to search online and find results based on their geographic location. To get a refined result, the search will automatically widen to prevent the need for a refined search. This could go on until you get enough results.
Brain implants to treat neurological diseases might look farfetched and like an invention of the future. However, Elon Musk and his company are working to turn it into a reality. He is working on a wireless interface brain-computer. This concept was first put into action by putting an implant in a pig’s brain. The implant serves to create a virtual connection between your brain and the computer. Besides mapping your brain, this implant is meant to improve neurological functions. When brain cells link and communicate with the computer, their performance will improve.
12. Internet Starlink
Through Internet Starlink, Musk is creating a future where you can access the internet from any location on the planet. What exactly is Internet Starlink? Well, this is a new technology meant to break down the current stigma when it comes to accessing satellite internet. It will also provide users with access to a low latency network.
One of the objectives of Internet Starlink is to provide services to the remotest regions in the world. This is through a private satellite that they own. Thanks to this approach, locations with no connection will also access fast internet connections. They will also enjoy connection benefits like those in urban centers.
13. Tunneling machines
Congestions are now common in every city around the world. While the transport sector has improved, moving from point A to point B is more frustrating than ever before. There are countless commuters on the road, making it harder to reach your destination faster.
Musk has a solution for this – tunneling machines. With these machines, you will be able to travel between cities faster. Furthermore, this invention will reduce the cost of tunneling underground, which is very high at the moment.
14. Tesla storage centers
While you can use solar panels during the day, using them at night always proves to be a challenge. Unless we develop ways to harness energy from the moon, it will be difficult to produce solar energy at night. In order to overcome this setback in the use of solar energy, Musk created Tesla storage centers.
Businesses and homes can now access solar energy from these storage units. These storage centers are popularly known as as Powerwalls or Powerpacks and they are efficient storage systems for energy. What’s more, they not only store solar power but also wind energy.
These are but a few popular inventions by Elon Musk. While some of them are mind-blowing and futuristic, he doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. In fact, we’re willing to bet that any moment now, we’ll be hearing about yet another new concept that he has come up with.
When you observe keenly, you’ll notice most of these inventions are aimed at making life easier for consumers. Some of them are focused on conserving available resources. For example, with vertical takeoff electric jets, airports will be much smaller.
They will only need parking space for planes to land on. That means runaways will be obsolete in the future. Electric motors on the other hand reduce reliance on fossil fuels. This invention not only conserves natural resources but also protects the planet from carbon emissions.
From Musk’s inventions and successes, you can learn that nothing is too farfetched to turn into a reality. If you’ve got an idea, all you need is funding to give it life. And for an idea to come to life, you’ve got to believe in yourself and pursue it consistently.
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