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Nokian One All-Season Tire Has Life Expectancy Of 80,000 Miles

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Nokian may be best known for its winter tires, but the company wants to expand its presence in new segments and markets. The Finnish firm believes its new One all-season tire will become a real game-changer with a predicted life of approximately 80,000 miles (128,750 kilometers). That’s according to a new report from Car and Driver.

The publication says Nokian is ramping up production of the new tire model at its plant in Tennessee and in Europe. The Nokian One is being advertised as the first all-season tire of the company designed especially for the North American market. At this point though, there’s no price disclosed but Car and Driver talks about an “affordable price point.”

But wait. Let’s get back to that huge number in the headline. No, we are not clickbaiting you because that’s a number Nokian says is possible thanks to the use of a new mix of materials. For example, there’s a good dose of aramid fibers, the same compound found in the Nokian Hakkapeliitta LT3 and R3 winter tires. This is the first time the company is using it in an all-season tire.

These strong fibers are used to strengthen the sidewall of the tire and make it more durable against pothole hits. In fact, Nokian is so confident the technology works that it will offer the Pothole Protection warranty program as a no-cost option when buying a set of One tires. The warranty will replace a tire free of charge if it’s damaged beyond repair by a pothole hit.

Nokian promises the new One tire will have better performance on a wet surface compared to the model it will replace, the Entyre 2.0 all-season tire. Even more importantly, the new tire will have lower rolling resistance. The Nokian One will be available in about 70 different sizes from 14 to 20 inches.

Source: https://www.motor1.com/news/465891/nokian-one-all-season-tire-life/?utm_source=RSS&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=RSS-category-technology

Automotive

Tesla to establish a new showroom and service center in Austin, Texas

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Public records from Texas indicate that Tesla is planning to build a new showroom and service center in the South Austin area. The electric car maker is reportedly spending about $2.5 million for the 30,000-square foot facility, which is located at 500 E. St. Elmo Road. 

As noted in a report from the Austin Business Journal, documents about the upcoming Tesla facility were filed on January 12 to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation. The filings indicate that Tesla intends to enlarge the location’s storefront windows and upgrade the building’s power. The EV maker also intends to install new lights, revamp the site’s interior, and install new charging equipment. 

The upcoming site would become Tesla’s first service center in Austin that’s south of downtown, which is quite interesting considering that the electric car maker is still barred from selling its cars directly to customers due to Texas state law. Despite this ban, Tesla has already established its presence in the area, with the company currently operating showrooms at The Domain and on Pond Springs Road. 

The renovation at the 500 E. St. Elmo Road site is expected to start on June 15 and be completed by September 15, 2021. 

Tesla’s presence in Texas is bound to become more prominent this year, especially considering that the electric car maker is currently building a massive factory in Southeast Austin. Dubbed Gigafactory Texas, the expansive site is expected to produce vehicles like the Model Y crossover and the Cybertruck, Elon Musk’s futuristic, cyberpunk-themed, and competitively-priced electric pickup. 

Musk confirmed last month that he has moved to Texas, despite Tesla and SpaceX maintaining a good part of their operations in California. Since then, other Musk-related companies have initiated plans to establish a foothold in the state. The Boring Company grabbed an industrial space in Pflugerville, and Neuralink recently posted a job listing for a “Head of Construction” in the Austin area. 

The Teslarati team would appreciate hearing from you. If you have any tips, email us at tips@teslarati.com or reach out to me at maria@teslarati.com.

Watch the latest flyover of Tesla Gigafactory Texas below.

Tesla to establish a new showroom and service center in Austin, Texas

Source: https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-texas-showroom-service-center-new-location/

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SpaceX Falcon 9 booster set to beat rocket turnaround record by a huge margin

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The Falcon 9 booster assigned to SpaceX’s first Starlink launch of the new year is on track to become the world’s most rapidly reusable rocket as early as Monday, January 18th.

Prior to 2020, SpaceX’s Block 5 booster turnaround record – referring to the time between two launches of the same rocket – happened to be set by two Falcon Heavy side boosters after they supported two of the rocket’s three total launches in just 74 days. In mid-2018, a pre-Block 5 Falcon 9 booster technically made it slightly further, flying twice in 71 days. While impressive, the speed of SpaceX’s Falcon Block 5 booster reuse remained firmly behind NASA’s Space Shuttle, the only operational orbital-class reusable rocket prior to Falcon.

Space Shuttle Discovery is pictured after completing its STS-120 mission in 2007. (NASA)

While already dramatically more cost-effective and labor-efficient than the Space Shuttle’s extraordinarily involved refurbishment process, SpaceX’s established turnaround time capabilities would begin to take huge steps forward in 2020. In July, the inevitable finally happened when a Falcon 9 booster launched for the second time in just 51 days, beating NASA’s longstanding Space Shuttle turnaround record of 54 days.

Falcon 9 booster B1060 achieved the same 51-day turnaround feat just three months later, proving that B1058’s record wasn’t a mere fluke. Ultimately, over the course of 2020, each flown Falcon 9 booster – excluding turnaround outliers greater than 200 days – averaged ~85 days between launches.

B1058 set the current world record when it launched ANASIS II just 51.08 days after sending Crew Dragon and two NASA astronauts on their way to orbit. (Richard Angle)

Now, on the second of dozens of SpaceX launches planned in 2021, the company is set to obliterate the turnaround world record set by Falcon 9 less than six months prior. Originally scheduled to launch on January 17th, SpaceX delayed the Starlink-16 (V1 L16) mission to 8:45 am EST (13:45 UTC), January 18th for unspecified reasons. Around the same time that delay became clear, Next Spaceflight was first to report that SpaceX had assigned Falcon 9 booster B1051 to the launch.

Last flown for the seventh time on December 13th, Falcon 9 B1051 is now scheduled to attempt its eighth orbital-class launch and landing just 36 days later, beating the 51-day world record by almost a third (~30%) and simultaneously becoming the first Falcon booster to launch eight times. If successful, SpaceX’s Falcon rockets will be mere days away from demonstrating monthly reusability.

Tune in tomorrow morning to catch SpaceX’s latest record-breaking rocket launch live.

SpaceX Falcon 9 booster set to beat rocket turnaround record by a huge margin

Source: https://www.teslarati.com/spacex-falcon-9-booster-record-rocket-turnaround-2021/

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Tesla audio partner DSP Concepts discusses noise cancellation tech & the future of sound in autonomous cars

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Sound might play a bigger role in the auto industry with the advent of the electric cars and the age of autonomous vehicles dawning. Tesla’s audio partner DSP Concepts (DSPC) knows a lot about sound and how big of a role it plays in everyday life. Teslarati spoke with part of the DSP Concepts team, who revealed the significance of sound in vehicles, especially as the electric car revolution starts to hit its stride. 

“It turns out a car is your most complicated audio product,” said Chin Beckmann, the co-founder and CEO of DSP Concepts. Beckmann described all the ways audio and sound play a part in how people interact with their vehicles, like phone calls, voice commands, or simple in-car communication from driver to passenger and vice versa. 

Engine noise cancellation is a feature that interests traditional cars owners as well. Inversely, for electric car owners, engine noise enhancements or noisemakers have become a sought after feature, particularly in the United States where it is mandatory for EVs. 

(Photo: Andres GE)

Tesla probably contributed to the popularity of noisemakers in vehicles with its recently-released Boombox feature, which allows drivers to play sounds through an external speaker. Funnily enough, EV owners seeking to increase the noise coming out of their vehicles, may also be looking for ways to decrease the sounds coming into their cars. 

“There’s a lot of interest in road noise cancellation from EVs,” said Dr. Paul Beckmann, founder and CTO of DSP Concepts. 

Last month, DSP Concepts announced that Audio Weaver would port Bose’s QuietComfort Road Noise Control (RNC) technology into its platform. The collaboration meant that car companies using the Audio Weaver platform, like Tesla, Porsche, or BMW, could offer Bose’s QuietComfort RNC to their vehicles. 

(Photo: Andres GE)

Dr. Beckmann clarified, however, that some hardware needs to be integrated into the vehicle for the Bose QuietComfort RNC to work. 

“The way the RNC works is it uses microphones inside the car to listen. It’s kind of like those active noise cancelling headphones. The headphones have microphones close by your ears. So [for] the retrofit, you’d have to put microphones, maybe, by the headrest or somewhere close to your ears,” he shared with Teslarati. 

Dru Wynings, Sr. Director of Marketing at DSP Concepts, added that some sensors would probably be needed in the car’s chassis as well. He also talked about the complexities of bringing Bose’s QuietComfort RNC to vehicles. 

“There’s a huge hardware component to it in terms of how much computation is needed, in terms of what their audio sound system is…all of that could take a toll. So, [automakers are] planning on what could actually fit on this specific chip to run this software,” said Wynings.

DSP Concepts did not reveal any details about Bose RNC coming to Tesla vehicles. There’s really no telling what features Tesla will roll out to its vehicles at the end of the day. 

However, the possibility is very high. It isn’t too far-fetched to think that Tesla might have already equipped its vehicles with the necessary hardware for features like Bose’s QuietComfort RNC, especially considering the upcoming release of the much-anticipated Model S and Model X refresh. The company already did something similar with its in-cabin camera. The hardware for the camera feature was equipped well before it was enabled via an OTA software update.

Road noise cancellation seems like a premium feature that could be available for Tesla’s top-tier vehicles, like the Model S and Model X. Or Tesla may roll out the Bose RNC feature to its entire fleet in a later update. After all, the Model 3 just had a refresh as well. 

Sound in Autonomous Vehicles

Aside from Tesla, DSP Concepts works with an array of automakers in the industry, both old and new companies. The company’s main goal is to bring audio engineering into the 21st century with the help of Audio Weaver. 

When it comes to the auto industry, DSPC seems very aware of how audio in cars will evolve as autonomy enters the industry. It has become evident that car companies, both legacy and startups, have started producing more tech-savvy vehicles. 

Tesla vehicles might be the most tech-savvy cars on the market. The EV manufacturer’s cars incorporate technology that people might look for in their vehicles now, like Netflix, Spotify, or even Caraoke. Yes, these features might not be necessary, but the same argument could be made for phones, laptops, or other devices. 

(Photo: Andres GE)

People can do much more than call others with their phones now. They can watch their favorite shows, listen to music, search the internet and much, much more.  People seem to want their tech to be well-rounded, so why not their vehicles?

Other car makers seem to be following Tesla’s footsteps. In addition to making more tech-oriented vehicles, more auto companies are also exploring autonomous cars. 

With autonomy in the picture, features like Tesla Theater or Tesla Arcade will be more utilized and with that comes the significance of sound. DSP Concepts understands that people might start looking for better sound quality in their autonomous vehicles as more entertainment options are offered by car companies. 

The Teslarati team would appreciate hearing from you. If you have any tips, email us at tips@teslarati.com or reach out to me at maria@teslarati.com. 

Tesla audio partner DSP Concepts discusses noise cancellation tech & the future of sound in autonomous cars

Source: https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-cabin-noise-reduction-upgrade-dsp-concepts-interview/

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The Tesla Semi’s economical advantage is frighteningly underestimated

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The Tesla Semi has its own fair share of critics, and even today, some notable voices such as Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates believe that the Class 8 all-electric truck is not feasible. When one looks at the currently available information about the upcoming vehicle, however, one would see that the Tesla Semi is vastly underestimated. 

One of the key criticisms surrounding the Tesla Semi is its weight, which skeptics would claim is far too much to be economically viable. Tesla has not shared any specifics surrounding the Semi’s weight, though the company did note that the vehicle consumes less than 2 kWh per mile. As noted by the OBF in a YouTube video, this would translate to the Semi likely having a battery that’s roughly around 600 kWh to 1,000 kWh, depending on whether the vehicle features a 300 or 500-mile range. 

Credit: teslasemi_/Instagram

Considering that Tesla’s 100 kWh batteries typically weigh around 1,300 lbs, it could then be inferred that the Semi’s battery pack would weigh around 7,800 to 13,000 lbs. This is assuming that the Semi is equipped with the same batteries that Tesla had when the Class 8 truck was unveiled. If Tesla’s 4680 cells are involved, this weight could be optimized further, considering that the company’s custom batteries are lighter and more powerful. 

Traditional diesel semitrailers typically weigh around 15,000 to 25,000 lbs, which means that the Semi would likely be at a disadvantage weight-wise. To address this disadvantage, Tesla would have to ensure that the rest of the Semi is made with light and durable materials. Tesla’s extensive experience as an EV maker plays a huge part in this, as the company could use all that it has learned during the design and rollout of the Model S,3,X,Y lineup to optimize the Semi’s weight. 

If Tesla’s estimates are correct and its new 4680 batteries are lighter, and if the electric car maker uses innovations such as a structural battery pack on the Semi, the weight disadvantage of the Class 8 truck against diesel rivals becomes much smaller. Couple this with the fact that the Semi’s electric motors weigh far less than a large diesel engine and the all-electric Class 8 long hauler becomes a very compelling alternative to traditional semitrailers. Even the Semi’s higher price, which is expected to start at $180,000, becomes a moot point considering that electric vehicles need far less maintenance over their lifetime. 

But this is not all. The Semi also stands to benefit from Tesla’s work with its Full Self-Driving suite, whose inner-city driving features are currently being rolled out to its initial batch of testers. Features such as Navigate on Autopilot, which would be incredibly useful for operators of the Tesla Semi, have already become refined over the years, and it would likely only take a matter of time before inner-city driving reaches the same state. When it does, capabilities that are unique to the Semi, such as its Convoy Mode, would likely become a “killer feature” that would make the vehicle a no-brainer against the competition. 

Watch the OBF’s take on the economics of the Tesla Semi in the video below. 

Don’t hesitate to contact us for news tips. Just send a message to tips@teslarati.com to give us a heads up.

The Tesla Semi’s economical advantage is frighteningly underestimated

Source: https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-semi-frightening-economics-video/

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