Tesla has just released a video featuring the latest version of the Tesla Bot, the company’s humanoid robot that could one day be deployed alongside its factory workers — or possibly replace them altogether.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced in 2021 that the company was working on the robot, saying it would be used to “eliminate dangerous, repetitive, boring tasks.” The next we heard about it was in September last year when Tesla unveiled a prototype.
Looking at Tuesday’s video, the Tesla Bot looks to be in good shape, though it does still walk as if it has a pinched nerve in its back.
The 65-second video shows the robot in various settings, including an office and a factory where a human worker can be seen working on assembling Tesla’s soon-to-launch Cybertruck electric pickup.
We also see a demonstration of the robot’s motor torque control, which includes its ability to not smash an egg when it really looks like it will. Using onboard cameras and a suite of sensors, the bipedal robot is also able to explore an environment and memorize it, setting it up nicely for work in a designated area.
Of course, it also has some built-in AI smarts, and the video shows how it’s being trained in this field using human input.
The most impressive part of the video is where the Tesla Bot is shown dealing with various objects using its robotic hands, the kind of task that’s notoriously difficult for robots to successfully perform — and a vital skill if the Tesla Bot is ever to be used in a meaningful way.
The robot currently lacks the versatility for things like somersaults — a skill that advanced robot specialist Boston Dynamics has incorporated into one of its own impressive robots — but then how many factory workers have you seen performing acrobats while putting a car together?
While the Tesla Bot is clearly making good progress, it’s still not clear when the electric-car maker might be able to use the robot to help make its business more efficient, which means Tesla’s human workers can rest easy (for now).
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