Tesla Announces Hardware two Sensor Suite, Future Level five Capability – News – Car and Driver, Car and Driver Blog
Tesla Announces Major Self-Driving Hardware Revision and Future Level five Capability
Fare thee well, dear Autopilot, for you are being shown the door, albeit you’re not being ushered through it fairly yet. Embarking today, all Tesla vehicles will feature hardware to enable what Tesla is now referring to as “self-driving capability,” with Tesla CEO Elon Musk adding that Autopilot “does not represent self-driving any more than autopilot in an aircraft makes it self-flying,” which could be a veiled retort to German regulators. A comprehensive upgrade of the camera, sensor, and computing suites permits for two flavors of the system, which Tesla is referring to as Hardware Two. And the company looks to be eyeing a switch roles Cannonball as a way to prove the fresh system’s worth.
The lower-tier system basically will enable the car to navigate freeways without driver input, which Musk referred to as “enhanced Autopilot.” The full-boat system also will be capable of navigating urban environments. Hardware two features either four or eight cameras as well as a sonar system that doubles the range. The eight-camera system consists of three forward-facing cameras ahead of the rearview mirror, two mounted in the B-pillars, two side-rear units in the turn-signal repeaters, and a rear-facing lens above the license plate. The larger volume of information is processed via a computer capable of twelve trillion operations per 2nd, which Musk calls “basically a supercomputer in a car.”
To commence, however, the cars won’t be fairly as capable as Hardware one vehicles. For the very first duo of months, Hardware 2–equipped Teslas will operate in learning mode; Tesla estimates that an update will arrive in December or January that will begin to unlock the potential of the fresh electronics suite, providing them feature parity with Autopilot cars. Updates will roll out harshly every two or three months after that, with the ultimate aim being total Level five autonomy (read: fully self-driving Level Five, not steering-wheel-free Level Five).
Musk hopes that, by the end of 2017, a Tesla will be able to drive itself from Los Angeles to Fresh York, drop the “driver” in Times Square, and then go park itself in a garage. He says it will be accomplished “without the need for a single touch, including charging.” Which seems to suggest that the company has plans to roll out inductive Supercharging inbetween Los Angeles and Fresh York in the next twelve months.
Tesla’s current target is for the system to be twice as safe as the average driver, with the ultimate objective being a tenfold increase in safety over human operators. And for those with Hardware 1–equipped automobiles, Tesla claims it will proceed to upgrade your system over time as well.