What is Tesla’s Autopilot all about (Part 1/2)?

References in this post are taken from Vehicle Manual of Model S published publicly on May 16 2019.

Autopilot consists of safety and convenience features working together to assist and reduce the workload of driver.

Model S consists of 12 Ultrasonic sensors on front (6) and rear (6) bumpers, 8 Cameras on front fenders, windshields and door pillars to cover vehicle surroundings, and a single front Radar behind the bumper to monitor the dynamics of vehicle in front. In this part 1 we will focus only on the safety features.

Safety features (Available on all Tesla Cars after Oct 2016) are:

1. Lane Assist

  • Lane Departure Warning: Vehicle understands the driver intention to change lane through turn indicators. If any of the turn signal is activated, based on the side the turn signal is active, it understands that the driver is about to perform lane change. If any obstacle or vehicle is detected in the target lane, vehicle alerts driver to not perform lane change. From other perspective, if vehicle front wheel crosses over nearby lane marking without any turn indicator held active it alerts driver by vibrating the steering wheel slightly.
Source: http://www.cartoys.com
  • Blind Spot Warning: At any time, if any vehicle or obstacle is detected in blind spot, a chime is played based on probability of collision.
Source: http://www.cartoys.com
  • Steering Intervention: While Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Warning are only alerting features, Steering Intervention automatically steers away from the adjacent lane and positions itself in a safer position in driving lane if vehicle tries to cross the lane unintentionally .

2. Collision Avoid Assist

  • Front Collision Warning: If any vehicle is detected in front and likely to be impacted, system alerts driver with chime and warning with front vehicle highlighted in RED.
  • Automatic Emergency Braking: This applies brakes to reduce the impact of collision if brake press is not detected even after Front Collision warning is shown. Intention here is to reduce the speed and may or may not avoid the collision. It operates only if current speed is between 10 kmph and 150 kmph.
  • Obstacle Aware Acceleration: It is similar to Automatic Emergency Braking, lessens the impact of front collision if host vehicle is travelling less than 10 mph by reducing motor torque. It has been useful for people with starting problem when they accidentally collide with front obstacles.
When OAA fails 🙂

Part 2 / 2 –> (Read here)

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