Elon Musk has said that the kid-size submarine they designed for safer Thai Cave rescue would arrive in Thailand in about 17 hours.
The Tesla and the SpaceX CEO also shared photos and videos of the metallic pod in a series of tweets on Sunday. He was optimistic that it will help to safely transport the remaining children from the Thai cave back to the land again to finally return home.
The footage he shared showed a group of engineers testing the submarine in a Los Angeles high school pool. In one video, a man emerged dry and protected from the inside of the 6-foot-long submarine.
pic.twitter.com/D1umiFDr1t — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 8, 2018
Earlier this week, Musk also deployed his engineers to Thailand to help with the operations.
The Kid-Size Submarine For Thai Cave Rescue
In his tweets, Musk explained the submarine was constructed based on feedback and information coming from Thailand. It is built with a large silver tube meant to be fastened to a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.
He explained the metal tube is light enough to be carried by two divers through four handles in the front and four in the back. The submarine is small enough to get through narrow tunnels from the cave and built with a nose cone to protect it when it accidentally collided with rocks.
The kid-submarine is also equipped with oxygen ports, four air tanks, and can remain submerged underwater for 35 seconds.
Musk said if the submarine arrived in Thailand after the boys are rescued, he hoped the submarine can still be used in future rescue operations.
Thai Cave Rescue Update
The rescue operation for the remaining children and their coach was supposed to resume on Monday. As of press time, however, officials said heavy rain is making the mission complicated. Strong rain began on Sunday and forecasters were reporting that the weather will continue to persist in the coming days.
The flooded caverns going to the cave were being drained for the past days. If the rain goes on, however, all efforts will be useless.
"We have two obstacles: water and time. This is what we have been racing against since day one," said Narongsak Osotthanakorn, the governor in Chiang Rai province where the cave was located. "We have to do all we can, even though it is hard to fight the force of nature."
On Sunday, four of the 12 boys were already guided out from the Tham Luang cave network. After the rescue, officials needed to refill oxygen tanks before another mission can be started.
The four boys were taken to a hospital where their health was examined. Doctors confirmed the boys were in good condition.