Science

Tesla may test its unmanned trucks in Nevada

Tesla may test its unmanned trucks in Nevada”

Tesla is also set to meet with the California DMV to discuss autonomous trucking technology, according to comments made by that organization to Reuters.

Uber has also moved in a similar direction, acquiring the self-driving truck company Otto a year ago. Tesla has already confirmed that it is working on an all-electric semi truck, set to be revealed in more detail at a planned event teased by Elon Musk to take place in September.

A self-driving Tesla semi truck is in the works.

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In a specific email between Tesla regulatory official Nasser Zamani and Nevada DMV official April Sanborn, the electric start-up says it wants to test prototypes in Nevada and California. But an email correspondence between the automaker and Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has added a twist to the story, hinting that the Musk-owned giant is developing a self-driving electric semi truck and could soon conduct "platoon tests" for the same.

Daimler, Volvo, and other European heavy-truck makers have put years of effort into the technology, including numerous demonstrations on limited stretches of highway. The idea is to have one truck in the lead with the rest following closely behind, slowing down or speeding up at the same time as the lead vehicle. A lead vehicle with a human driver could be used, with autonomous follow vehicles that cut down on the total need for driver and increase overall efficiency.

Zamani did not mention any dates for potential road tests but inquired about the terms of obtaining an AV testing license.

"Autonomous vehicles would hurt us if they spread to trucks", Buffett told shareholders at Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.A) annual meeting in May. It's not surprising to see autonomy on Tesla's trucks.

While established trucking companies and truck manufacturing startups have poured resources into electrifying local package delivery fleets, battery range limitations have largely kept the industry from making electric trucks that travel across swaths of the country.

Diesel trucks used for cross-country hauls by United Parcel Service Inc can travel up to 500 miles (800 km) on a single tank, according to UPS's director of maintenance and engineering, worldwide operations, Scott Phillippi.



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