Electric semi trucks and tunnels

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by juanm, Apr 29, 2017.

  1. juanm macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    #1
    https://electrek.co/2017/04/28/tesla-semi-elon-musk-teaser-image-all-electric-truck/

    "After announcing a planned unveiling in September 2017 for Tesla Semi, Tesla’s all-electric semi truck, CEO Elon Musk released the first teaser image of the truck today.
    [​IMG]

    Musk is currently giving a TED talk today about his projects and after releasing the concept for his new ‘Boring Company’, he talked briefly about Tesla Semi.

    He confirmed that the prototype is already working and he even got a quick test drive around the parking lot. He added that the truck “feels like a sports car”.

    The CEO also confirmed that the vehicle will be capable of long hauls, which was previously uncertain due to its expected all-electric powertrain which requires an incredibly large battery pack in order to travel hundreds of miles with a large payload.

    A teaser released during the talk gives us our first glimpse at the vehicle.

    It definitely seems to have the same size and form as a class 8 truck, albeit with a more modern look and also no side view mirrors. Autonomous driving sure seems to be built into the design?

    Since Musk announced that Tesla plans to unveil the truck in September, analysts have warned truck makers not to laugh because they believe Tesla’s electric truck is going to be disruptive in the industry.

    The driver and the fuel are the two most important costs of operating a heavy-duty truck and Tesla’s product is expected to eventually eliminate the role of the driver and significantly reduce the cost of fuel with an all-electric powertrain.

    Tesla could leverage his expertise in solar to put a solar roof on these trucks which with the large area over hours on the road could add significant mileage.

    During the talk, Musk also reiterated Tesla’s plan to demonstrate its self-driving technology with a coast-to-coast fully autonomous drive on the second generation Autopilot. The same technology is expected to be leveraged in Tesla’s semi truck.

    The details about the truck are still scarce. We don’t know what Tesla has in mind for the charging infrastructure and if it integrates with Tesla’s current infrastructure for its passenger vehicles, but all should be revealed in September."


    This is coming the day after the first video of Musk's new company, The Boring Company, which aims to create high speed tunnels between cities. They just bought a used boring machine in order to test improvements, with the long term goal of a 10x speed increase.



    While overly ambitious and optimistic (most certainly on purpose), this has the potential to disrupt everything we take for granted in transportation, and Musk has deep pockets and the trust of investors (for now), along with experience disrupting industries (finance, cars, commercial space flights).
     
  2. AustinIllini macrumors G3

    AustinIllini

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    #2
    Not much of a Tesla fan, but they've made it to the point that society is demanding electric vehicles and responsible energy sources. There's really not a lot the Trump administration can do at this point to undo that progress.
     
  3. MadeTheSwitch macrumors 6502a

    MadeTheSwitch

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    #3
    I love the boring idea. Although I am not sure there would be enough of those sled things to go around. Seems like it would be a bottleneck.

    As for the trucks, someday we will have driverless trucks delivering things coast to coast. No drivers needing sleep, or mandatory rest breaks. Just a stop for recharge. Make it efficient enough and eventually it won't have to stop at all.

    As a society we need to start preparing for the massive job losses that are coming through all this automation. It is coming. And I just don't see enough replacement jobs on the horizon.
     
  4. Herdfan macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Personally I don't think we use trains enough. Trucks should be for last mile or time-critical deliveries only. No reaosn a truck should go across the country. May take a day or 2 longer but in most cases it doesn't matter.
     
  5. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #5
    I'm not sure that The Boring Company is a name that would benefit any business.
     
  6. Huntn, Apr 30, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017

    Huntn macrumors P6

    Huntn

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    #6
    Waving goodbye to truck and taxi drivers. No, no problem at all. :rolleyes: <- sarcasm.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 30, 2017 ---
    Will capitalism as we know it survive in a viable society, or will a general breakdown be required for a economic new mainstream idea to emerge <cough- socialism>? Step one, ripup all the National paper debt. Individual wealth may cease to exist or be severely limited. The rule makers will have to be kept on a short, but more important honest leash as individuals' importance to society is calculated. Guns.... Well I predict a mass of armed citizens is bad for this process. I'll count on a high likelihood of a violent upheaval. And knowing human nature, I'll predict a violent power struggle with no certainty that good guys will win. :oops:
     
  7. juanm, Apr 30, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017

    juanm thread starter macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    #7
    Musk himself, who's running these very companies, has spoken in favour of universal basic income. As the pace of progress accelerates, we need to become more nimble when it comes to adapting (ie: better education). Ten years ago, there were no real smartphones. Today, we do everything on them: we shop, conmunicate, work, bank, take pictures, learn, meet new people from our phones. They guide us, entertain us, organise our lifes: in just a decade, they went from pretty much non existing to being the hub of our lives. New progress will build on past progress, accelerating the speed of implementation, while everything else will stay at 20th century pace.
     
  8. samiwas macrumors 68000

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    #8
    Someone posted a thread about the car sled tunnel thing in another forum I frequent and this was my response: "This might be literally the stupidest thing I have ever seen."

    For the most part, that was because our city already has underground trains, although not nearly enough. If you're going to go to the expense of boring new tunnels, why in the hell would you not make them work with your existing train technology? If you want to transport cars, you can do it on those same rails with some sort of train car or sled. Building a whole new set of tunnels just for custom car sleds just sounds monumentally stupid. I could really get behind the car-on-a-train idea.
     
  9. Eraserhead macrumors G4

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    #9
    People without work aren't genrally happy - regardless of how rich they are.
     
  10. MadeTheSwitch macrumors 6502a

    MadeTheSwitch

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    #10
    I agree. I've always wondered about that. It might be that our train system as built is overloaded and couldn't handle the volume though. There has got to be a place to put all those many many train cars when they reach their destination. And trains can only be so long in length realistically. Then getting even more trucks to the train yard to intercept the train delivery...sounds like a lot more central congestion.

    That might be the problem. Trucks are just more flexible.
     
  11. juanm thread starter macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    The whole idea is to have multiple levels, and avoiding going through private property. This is of course only interesting if they manage to reduce the price of tunnelling by a lot. Of course, this wouldn't fly (?) under city centers with a dense underground network, but it would help a lot with commuting from the outskirts.

    In this case, again, the core of the problem is technical feasibility/scalability.
     
  12. Zenithal macrumors 603

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    #12
    And should there be an accident in a tunnel that causes the batteries to become punctured and erupt in flames? Let's not have a repeat of Mont Blanc.
     
  13. mudslag macrumors regular

    mudslag

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    #13

    I look forward to our Johnny Cab overloards

     
  14. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #14
    You're correct and not least that it will take better education for people not only to prepare for jobs that require different skills, but also to understand the need for universal basic income, since not everyone is going to be up for the evolving array of job prospects.

    So far the idea of UBI tends to get dismissed out of hand. There seems little comprehension that the alternative is eventually a population with a preponderance of people having no prospect of employment, which situation is clearly unsustainable. That's not a scenario with an burgeoning underclass, that's a scenario for devolution to anarchy.

    UBI is one way to put a floor under families and prevent some of the anxiety that gives rise to various of the nastier expressions of populism. People exist, therefore need to eat and have shelter, and will act accordingly.

    In the US such statements are usually met from the right with ripostes like "That's why the police are militarized". Well that's not a solution to the problem, which at root is not voluntariy antisocial behavior but desperation over lack of opportunity and lack of the education needed to acquire life's necessities when there's no safety net.
     
  15. jkcerda macrumors 6502a

    jkcerda

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    #15
    that there is the scary part.
     
  16. LizKat macrumors 601

    LizKat

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    #16
    Well it was always going to get scary at some point when you live in a society that is predicated on consumerism to fuel the economy but also has management determined to pay less and less for labor. It's a recipe for buyers turned to looters. But see everything from management's point of view is short term: are we good for this quarter? Yes? Then life is good.

    We are the frog in the pot of water getting hotter. But, so is management. The whole system is in that pot.
     
  17. DrewDaHilp1 macrumors 6502a

    DrewDaHilp1

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    #17
    Self driving semi's will destroy the trucking industry. Say bye bye to even more decent paying jobs with little to no education.
     
  18. juanm thread starter macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    #18
    Yes. The alternative being to do what? Prohibit self-driving via regulations? Who's going to say to UPS or Amazon "hey, you cannot innovate anymore"? Other countries won't do it, which will give them an advantage (lower production costs) and in the long run it will also impact local workers, as the countries without self driving will have higher costs and lose competitiveness (that is, unless countries go the North Korean way and close themselves to the rest of the world).

    Progress + old fashioned ways + ever growing population is a recipe for disaster. We need to rethink first world societies.

    UBI is not perfect, but as far as I know it's the only way forward.
     
  19. DrewDaHilp1 macrumors 6502a

    DrewDaHilp1

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    #19
    I didn't say I had solutions, I'm just saying what the result are going to be. I don't believe UBI is going to become a thing, just look at what happens to jobs when $15 min. wage jobs are forced in.
     
  20. diamond.g macrumors 603

    diamond.g

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    #20
    My understanding was that the sleds would go up to 240mph, which isn't something you would want to share with existing infrastructure.
     
  21. juanm thread starter macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    #21
    Guess what will happen to ALL* jobs and wages when the unemployment hits 30%?
    First world countries (and the US in particular) depend on people consuming. Without consumers, everything falls apart.

    * okay, most.
     
  22. 576316, May 1, 2017
    Last edited: May 1, 2017

    576316 macrumors 601

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    #22
    At some point there will be a polar shift in the way we consider life and its purpose. There will come a time when society does not revolve around people having jobs. Some will have jobs, but more people will not. Those people still need money, which will need to be funded in part by the money generated by the automation systems removing those jobs. Universal Basic Income is in our futures. It's a necessary part of human evolution, the Automation Age is coming.

    Right now, Elon Musk and his handful of companies are amongst some of the only powers actually trying to push the human race forward and into a new era. Everybody else is coasting along dealing with what we've known for so many years, because it's all we've known. We need thinkers like Elon who understand what is needed to advance the human race to its next stages. Automation, electricity generation, space exploration. The human race has got to evolve or face total extinction in time.

    Elon Musk is my only god.

    Ps. Please take that last phrase with a Model S of irony.
     
  23. juanm, May 1, 2017
    Last edited: May 1, 2017

    juanm thread starter macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    #23
    I'm pretty sure he'd dislike the choice of words. I agree about the rest, though.
     
  24. 576316 macrumors 601

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    #24
    In a recently published TED talk interview, Elon mentions that there will be emergency service solutions within the tunnels which will assist any accidents that occur. He went on to mention that eventually it will get to the point where the automation inside vehicles (and the buggies they imagine for these tunnels) is unlikely to fail in a thousand lifetimes. So accidents in these tunnels will be incredibly rare.
    --- Post Merged, May 1, 2017 ---
    I used the phrase purely ironically. Of course he'd hate it. As much as I do.
     
  25. Number-Six macrumors 6502

    Number-Six

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    #25
    Such a missed opportunity in the company name. They should have went with North Central Positronics

    :D
     

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