During a Q&A session at an event at the Hyperloop Pod design competition awards ceremony at Texas A&M University on Sunday, a member of the crowd asked Musk what his next big idea was, reports Engadget.
“I have been thinking about the vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) electric jet a bit more,” Musk replied. “I think I have something that might close. I’m quite tempted to do something about it.”
Electric planes aren’t an entirely new concept, notes Autoblog. A French electric plane called “Electra” flew in 2007 followed by an electric plane called “ElectraFlyer C” in 2008 made by a company called Electric Aircraft Corp, but neither went into commercial production. In 2009 Musk actually first revealed he had had thoughts about a supersonic electric plane but at the time that was before the launch of the Tesla Model S, and he noted “I have too much to think about.”
But now it seems Musk thinks the time could be right to pull the trigger on his electric plane ideas–-and those ideas have evolved to include an electric plane that does vertical takeoffs and landings. His announcement got an enthusiastic response from the crowd. He also went on to give the winners of the Hyperloop Pad design competition advice, which could also apply to his thoughts on planes.
“If you’re trying to create a company, it’s important to limit the number of miracles in series. You want to start off with something that’s the most doable, and then expand from there,” he said before adding that fundamental physics and economics “should drive the true solution.”