With the launch of Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA)’s hyped Autopilot system approaching, the car maker is beta testing the feature utilizing present Model S owners. A group of select Tesla Customers will be volunteers for the Autopilot system. In spite of Tesla’s testing processes being fairly exhaustive, the volunteers will subject the Autopilot system to the best test that is of everyday life.
Despite what its name suggests, Autopilot doesn’t convert Tesla’s Model S into a self-driving automobile. Tesla sees the system as a mechanism designed to help human behind the wheel. Musk recently described the Tesla system as akin to an airliner’s autopilot. Under autopilot, the computer steers the plane subject to the supervision of human pilots. Musk added that Tesla didn’t want people to think that they need not do anything while the car is in motion.
The Tesla Autopilot can assist the automobile to keep its place within a lane, maintain its distance from cars before it and handle acceleration as well as braking. Keeping the Tesla car within a lane is done by harnessing cameras and sensors. The car’s auto-passing functionality is still manual with drivers having to turn on the turn signal. The autopilot technology works only on highways at present.
Musk described the system’s capacity in navigating and control of braking as well as acceleration as substantial. This makes it suitable for real-time traffic scenarios.
Also, Autopilot will come up with a 360-degree ultrasonic sonar that tracks the automobile’s periphery, the capability to read street signs as well as sense pedestrians, other vehicles, and obstacles.
Tesla’s Autopilot is not the sole autonomous or semi-autonomous system in the market.
Infiniti provides a series of aids to drivers that collaborate to make sure the automobile keeps inside a lane as well as accelerate and brake as per surrounding traffic. Volvo, BMW and Audi all have 100% autonomous functionality in the works that operate without needing any kind of inputs from the human driver.
Sources: slashgear, businessinsider