Tesla Model Y production will power up in November 2019

April 12, 2018 by  
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With all the news about the Tesla Model 3 and the cargo hauling Tesla Semi , we might have forgotten that Tesla is already hard at work on its next model, the Tesla Model Y . We have yet to see the Tesla Model Y crossover, but according to the latest reports, Tesla has a goal of starting production in November 2019. Sources recently revealed to Reuters this week that Tesla is currently accepting bids for supplier contracts for the compact crossover. Tesla is keeping most of the details under wraps, but it has reportedly told suppliers as part of an RFI (request for information) that it will begin production of the Model Y at its Fremont, California plant by the end of next year. Related: The Tesla Semi just made its first cargo trip transporting battery packs News about Tesla getting ready for the Model Y production may raise comments from critics, since Tesla still hasn’t fully ramped up production of the Model 3 . Tesla is still hoping that it will be able to produce 5,000 Model 3 sedans a week at some point this quarter. It may seem aggressive that Tesla plans to start production so quickly, but the fact that the compact crossover shares its platform with the Model 3 will help. Tesla aims to eventually produce 1 million Model Y crossovers a year, helped by a new production facility in China that is expected to power up by 2021. Now that we have a production start date for the Model Y, we can get ready for the reveal of the car in the near future, though Tesla hasn’t confirmed just when this will happen. For now, we just have this single teaser of the Model Y. + Tesla Via  Reuters Images by Tesla

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Tesla Model Y production will power up in November 2019

How forest bathing can profoundly improve your health and well-being

April 4, 2018 by  
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Dive into the practice of forest bathing. Doing so does not clean your body, per se, but rather refreshes the spirit and benefits your mood and health. Even scientific studies back forest bathing. So what are you waiting for? Discover the new trend that can make you feel more connected to the world. What is forest bathing? Since 1982, forest bathing — called shinrin-yoku — has been practiced in Japan as a means of reconnecting with nature. The Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries created forest bathing as a way to promote national health and being outdoors. While this is not an ancient practice, many see it as a cure for modern ailments. Thanks to the internet, forest bathing has dramatically increased in popularity all over the globe. For the full experience, participants walk with trained guides–experts who help people see nature in a new light. Forest bathing has many similarities to meditation — it quiets the mind and spirit, and it aims to use the five senses to experience nature as never before. The activity unfolds at a much slower pace than hiking, and the destination itself is less important than the journey. What are the benefits forest bathing? As the popularity of forest bathing increases, science has begun to provide evidence for the practice’s benefits. In a 2011 study, scientists found that people walking in nature had lower blood pressure than those in the city. Another study in Japan showed that inhaling the aroma from cedar trees boosts stress-fighting compounds in the body. Most of all, forest bathing benefits your mood. Participants have seen improvement in both focus and attention, and researchers have even linked this practice to better focus in those with ADHD . Mental conditions such as depression, stress, anxiety and anger all show improvements in people who forest bathe. Related: Tiny meditation shelters are the perfect place for hikers to connect with the forest Forest bathing also has physical benefits — during the activity, measurable differences in several bodily processes occur. The immune system increases production of white blood cells that kill disease, and blood pressure and surgical recovery time decrease as well. If these weren’t reasons enough to try forest bathing, you may be surprised by how accessible the practice is. How to forest bathe While you may forest bathe on your own, it’s better to have a certified guide take you through the process. Like therapists who take their clients through guided meditation, these professionals are trained to help people put their minds in the moment. By 2019, the world will have 450 certified forest bathing guides across 23 countries around the world, so finding one will be easier than ever. If you don’t have a forest guide near you, you can still experience forest bathing on your own. The secret is integrating all your senses. Look, listen, feel, taste and smell your surroundings as though experiencing them for the first time. Don’t carefully focus on everything. Instead, examine your surroundings and look at things that capture your attention . A soft gaze relaxes you more than the constant, close focus of modern life. Take a deep breath through your nose and notice the peculiar scent of the forest. Plants have different scents, which act as natural aromatherapy. Don’t forget the soil. Microbes in it produce a smell that may act as an antidepressant . Feel tree bark and leaves. Run dirt between your fingers. If you feel adventurous, embrace a tree trunk. The variety of textures will give your sense of touch a treat. Close your eyes, stop walking, quiet your mind and just listen. The longer you open your ears to the sounds of the forest, the more you’ll hear, boosting your experience. Sounds include more than just the chirping of birds. Listen for the wind in the trees, the scuttling of insects in the soil and the noise of larger animals deep in the woods. Though you don’t want to taste anything in a forest without a guide, you can bring natural foods and drinks with you, such as tea or fresh fruits. This will be especially effective if the fruits are native to your area. Bringing your own food allows you to taste the forest without putting yourself at risk of ingesting a toxic substance. Where to forest bathe Forest bathing locations in Japan must meet rigorous standards set by the practice’s founding organization, but elsewhere in the world, forest bathing typically can be done anywhere. Several American resorts offer forest bathing , including The Lodge at Woodloch, Blackberry Farm and Big Cedar Lodge. While many people opt for their nearest natural space, those stuck indoors can still benefit from connecting with nature. Forest bathing guides take groups outside, but for those without access to the outdoors, just connecting with nature in any way seems beneficial. A study from Texas A&M University researcher Robert Ulrich showed lowered pain, anxiety and blood pressure in those who looked at photos or paintings of nature. Though still a new practice, forest bathing has already shown great promise in treating real conditions without the side effects of medication. Next time you go outside, why not find your nearest nature trail and begin your own forest bathing experience?

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Tesla voluntarily makes their biggest recall ever for 123,000 Model S vehicles

March 30, 2018 by  
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Tesla just issued their biggest ever recall  involving over 123,000 Model S cars. The automaker said they noticed excessive corrosion in power steering bolts, The Verge and Agence France Presse reported. They’re voluntarily recalling the cars and will retrofit impacted cars with a new part that will resolve the issue. Tesla recalled thousands of Model S cars built before April 2016. There haven’t been any crashes or injuries reported connected to the issue — in an email sent to customers, the automaker said this is a proactive move. According to Agence France Presse, the problem has only been observed in locations where salt is used on winter roads to melt ice or snow, but Tesla will retrofit all Model S cars containing the part. No other models are involved in this recall. Related: The Tesla Semi just made its first cargo trip transporting battery packs Tesla’s email said, “If the bolts fail, the driver is still able to steer the car, increased force is required due to loss or reduction of power assist. This primarily makes the car harder to drive at low speeds and for parallel parking, but does not materially affect control at high speed, where only small steering wheel force is needed.” The company said if an owner hasn’t experienced issues, they don’t have to cease driving the cars, and that they would let owners know when retrofits, estimated to take around one hour, were available in their area. The Verge said this is Tesla’s largest recall; in 2015 they recalled 90,000 Model S cars due to a faulty seat belt, and in 2017 they recalled 53,000 Model X and Model S vehicles because of a parking brake issue. The publication also noted the recall comes right as the company is getting ready to report quarterly deliveries — people will be watching to see how many Model 3 cars Tesla has delivered to customers this year. Via The Verge and Agence France Presse Images via Depositphotos and Wikimedia Commons

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Tesla voluntarily makes their biggest recall ever for 123,000 Model S vehicles

Swiss police to replace diesel fleet with 7 Tesla Model X-100Ds

March 19, 2018 by  
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The Swiss police are electrifying! The Basel-Stadt canton announced in a recent press release that they plan to replace their fleet of diesel vehicles with seven Tesla Model X-100D electric vehicles. Although the purchase will be expensive, at about $147,000 a piece, the police are convinced their overall costs will fall. Plus, they expressed concern about reducing their environmental impact . In addition to lower maintenance costs, the police expect the resale value of Tesla vehicles to be greater than that of their existing fleet. And they aren’t concerned with running out of juice while on a high-speed chase. “With a current charge the Tesla drives at least 500 kilometers,” they wrote in their press release. “Vehicles of the alerting patch cover an average of 200 kilometers per day per day.” Related: Dubai police unveil electric hoverbikes Dutch security firm Force Pro have customized the Basel city police’s new vehicles, according to regional daily the Basellandschaftliche Zeitung . Force Pro sales director Theo Karanfantis told the paper cited connectivity and communication as among the Tesla vehicle’s key benefits. “A conventional car brings a police officer from A to B,” he said. “What Basel police are now buying is a laptop on wheels”. Two charging stations will be installed at Kannenfeld and Clara police stations, according to the press release. Lastly, the police said the Tesla X-100D is the only electric vehicle on the market that is capable of meeting their needs. + Basel Police Via The Local Images via Tesla

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Swiss police to replace diesel fleet with 7 Tesla Model X-100Ds

A British billionaire is building the world’s biggest battery to rival Elon Musk’s

March 16, 2018 by  
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British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta is building the world’s biggest battery in South Australia, knocking Elon Musk’s battery project from the title. South Australia is home to a 100MW battery the size of a football field, which switched online last November. Gupta plans to build his own 120MW battery at a storage facility at Whyalla Steelworks , which he purchased last year. A once-in-a-lifetime storm caused blackouts throughout South Australia in 2017, prompting the state to secure its energy grid against future disruptions. The state began investing in renewable energy – and it’ll invest $7.8 million into Gupta’s project. The SIMEC ZEN Energy storage facility will be located 186 miles north of Adelaide in Port Augusta. Gupta’s GFG Alliance bought the struggling steelmaking giant Arrium last year, of which the Whyalla Steelworks is a part. Related: Tesla’s South Australia battery starts delivering power a day early Musk pledged last year to build a South Australia battery facility in 100 days – or the project would be free . He built it in just 63 days, and the project switched online last November. Musk’s battery is connected to a wind farm operated by energy firm Neoen, and it provides enough energy to power 8,000 homes for 24 hours during a blackout. Via Phys.org Images via GFG Alliance and Tesla

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Despite Trump’s rhetoric, US officials are still working to stop climate change

March 16, 2018 by  
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When Trump stepped away from the historic Paris climate agreement and proposed  slashing the EPA’s climate research budget , he signaled to the world that reducing carbon emissions wasn’t a priority for the US. But what Trump says and what his government does are two different things. While Trump continues to bloviate, federal agencies and scientists continue to collaborate on international efforts to fight climate change. Despite what Trump has said, the State Department, government scientists, and federal agencies continue to work hard to fight climate change. Technically, the US is no longer part of the Paris accord . But scientists and federal employees have been helping to draft the rulebook for its implementation. The US has also quietly boosted funding for clean energy projects, and research into global warming, as well as signing a global call to action to fight climate change. Related: US states and cities say they’re sticking to the Paris Accord without Trump Leaders and researchers from international groups aimed at fighting climate change say that they don’t notice a huge change from before and after Trump took office. Aleksi Härkönen, chair of the Arctic Council advisors group, said, “We really don’t detect any change with the Americans.” Back at home, Trump allies are dismayed that the President hasn’t implemented his rhetoric. “I am concerned that much of our climate policy remains on autopilot,” said Trump’s former energy adviser Myron Ebell. Part of the reason for the lack of change is that Trump hasn’t replaced staffers or filled key positions necessary to push through his agenda. “Our U.S. colleagues know that climate change is not a hoax,” said one anonymous scientist, who helped draft the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report along with US scientists. Via Reuters Images via Unsplash and Flickr

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The Tesla Semi just made its first cargo trip transporting battery packs

March 8, 2018 by  
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The Tesla Semi recently hit the roads on its very first production cargo trip, according to Tesla CEO Elon Musk , who posted a picture to social media. The image showed two of the heavy duty trucks Musk said would ferry battery packs from the Nevada Gigafactory to Tesla’s California car factory. First production cargo trip of the Tesla Semi heavy duty truck, carrying battery packs from the Gigafactory in the Nevada mountains to the car factory in California A post shared by Elon Musk (@elonmusk) on Mar 7, 2018 at 11:23am PST Tesla Semis recently embarked on the 258-mile trip between the first Gigafactory and Tesla’s factory in Fremont, Inverse reported . The journey would take around four hours and pass through Sacramento. Production on the trucks isn’t anticipated to start until next year, so Inverse said it isn’t clear if the cargo trip is basically a real-world test or marks the beginning of regularly scheduled deliveries. According to Electrek , Tesla vice president of Trucks and Programs Jerome Guillen said in 2017 the company would be their own first customer, utilizing the vehicles to transport cargo between the Gigafacory and Fremont car factory. Related: Tesla is selling its solar products in Home Depot stores starting in July Inverse pointed out this is the first time since Tesla unveiled the Semi late last year we’ve glimpsed the vehicle with an attached trailer. Other sightings had shown the Semi on its own. The Semi will have a range of 300 miles or 500 miles, with expected base prices of $150,000 or $180,000, respectively, according to the Tesla Semi web page. Tesla said the truck features “badass performance,” boasting an acceleration of zero to 60 miles per hour in 20 seconds. The vehicle, which they described as the safest truck ever, will be equipped with four independent motors and Enhanced Autopilot. The company also said the Tesla Semi offers $200,000 or more in fuel savings, saying, “ Electric energy costs are half those of diesel .” Inverse said Tesla has accepted preorders from UPS, Walmart, Pepsi, Sysco, and Anheuser-Busch, to name a few companies. + Tesla Semi + Elon Musk Instagram Via Inverse Images via Tesla

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The Tesla Semi just made its first cargo trip transporting battery packs

Tesla’s Powerwall faces stiff competition from several other storage products

March 5, 2018 by  
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While Tesla ‘s Powerwall may be the most well-known example of residential solar energy storage systems, it is not the only one and is facing increased competition. Nearly all major residential solar companies are now developing a similar household energy storage system, either independently or in collaboration with another company. Among those companies, SunRun, Vivint Solar and SunPower seem to be the most viable competitors to Tesla’s residential solar operations. The increased competition is good news for consumers as well as the renewable energy sector generally, indicating that the industry is maturing and spreading. SunRun now maintains the largest market share in the American residential solar industry , in part thanks to its ability to work with internal and external installation partners. This means that SunRun is able to more quickly scale up its distribution. The company’s Brightbox system incorporates LG Chem batteries into a control system (designed by SunRun) and is currently available in Arizona, California, Hawaii, New York, and Massachusetts , with more states coming online in 2018. Related: Nova Scotia Power pioneers new energy storage system using Tesla Powerpacks Vivint Solar is collaborating with Mercedes-Benz to develop a 2.5 kW-hr energy storage system that can be expanded up to a 20 kW-hr system for household needs. Mercedes-Benz already has energy storage products available in the more developed European market, which puts it in a good place as the American market grows. Last but not least, SunPower will launch its home energy storage system under its Equinox product line in 2018. Because they are geared towards high-end customers, those with the most funds to invest in new technology, it may see more rapid growth than its competitors. Regardless of the commercial success of any individual company, the flurry of activity in the American residential energy storage is a welcome sign as the United States, like the rest of the world, must move forward towards a clean energy economy. Via The Motley Fool Images via SunRun and SunPower

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Tesla-powered 1981 Honda Accord accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 2.7 seconds

February 23, 2018 by  
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Electric car conversions are popping up more and more as tinkerers put Tesla parts into other vehicles. Electrek recently shared an impressive example: the Teslonda, a 1981 Honda Accord converted by Jim Belosic of Reno, Nevada. He equipped the car with a Performance Large Tesla Drive Unit from HSR Motors and a Chevy Volt battery pack. The Teslonda’s body may be nearly 40 years old, but the modified car still accelerated from zero to 60 miles per hour in 2.7 seconds. If you see a 1981 Honda Accord rolling around the streets of Reno, it just might have a Tesla drive unit inside. Belosic, CEO of software company ShortStack who wrenches with cars as a hobby, told Inhabitat, “I’ve kept [the Honda Accord] around but I wasn’t driving it much…so I figured modernizing it with an electric drivetrain would be kinda fun. I haven’t worked with electric vehicle systems before, but I really think that is where the future is headed so I figured I should learn the technology . I’ve always been into modifying and hotrodding cars, so going electric is the next step.” Related: Tesla-powered trolley spotted charging in Minnesota Belosic shared a video of the Teslonda accelerating on YouTube, and said the 2.7 seconds milestone happened with “38 degree asphalt, cold tires, and a cold battery. I’m thinking 2.5 seconds is possible.” Electric Gasser hahaha ? #teslonda #gasser #hondaaccord #teslalife A post shared by Jimmy Built (@jimmy.built) on Feb 15, 2018 at 8:50pm PST Electrek said HSR Motors’ Performance Large Tesla Drive Unit offers a peak power output of 400 kilowatts. Jason Hughes, whom Electrek described as a prominent Tesla hacker, started HSR Motors after purchasing lots of Model X and Model S salvaged vehicles, repairing some and using components of others in projects such as a home energy storage system. He’s now selling Tesla drive units, battery modules, and a custom control system through HSR Motors. Sorry I haven’t posted anything in a while. I’ve been busy with a new project: #teslonda. She’s a cross between a Tesla model S, a 60s #gasser and a 1981 Honda Accord. She’s extremely quick. A post shared by Jimmy Built (@jimmy.built) on Feb 10, 2018 at 7:43pm PST Belosic has also worked on a steam car and posted videos on YouTube. He told Inhabitat, “It’s fun to learn something new, just like the steam car last year. Next year maybe I’ll do something turbine-powered.” He shared more images of the Teslonda and his other projects on Instagram; you can check them out here . + Jimmy Built YouTube + Jimmy Built Instagram Via Electrek Images via Jimmy Built on YouTube

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Tesla-powered 1981 Honda Accord accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 2.7 seconds

Elon Musk’s brother Kimbal is giving away his personal Tesla Model 3

February 21, 2018 by  
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Kimbal Musk , Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s brother , is giving away his Tesla Model 3 — the sixth one ever made. Why would he do that? According to Electrek , it’s for a good cause: to benefit his nonprofit, Big Green , which provides Learning Gardens for underserved schools . Hit the jump to find out how you could win. Musk is giving away his own Tesla Model 3: a blue one that Omaze , the online platform hosting the campaign, described as fully loaded : “We’re talking everything from voice-activated controls and Wi-Fi/LTE connectivity to a premium audio system and LED fog lamps. Plus, the Long Range battery, which will keep you going for over 300 miles. This Tesla hasn’t been to space, but it’s still out of this world.” Oh, and taxes are covered as well, according to Omaze. Related: Kimbal Musk launches a revolutionary shipping container farm initiative in Brooklyn I’m so excited to give YOU the chance to win my fully customized #teslamodel3 —the sixth Model 3 ever made—to support my nonprofit @biggreen Watch the brilliant minds who helped me design my next car, then enter to win through my bio link or omaze.com/tesla ???? A post shared by Kimbal Musk (@kimbalmusk) on Feb 20, 2018 at 8:29am PST The legal information on Omaze’s website also lists other premium upgrade details, like heated seating, open pore wood decor, a tinted glass roof with infrared and ultraviolet protection, and a center console with docking for two smartphones. Omaze said the average retail value of the Tesla is $60,500. I sure do love my #Tesla #Model3 ?? ? ?? A post shared by Kimbal Musk (@kimbalmusk) on Feb 19, 2018 at 9:08am PST Musk isn’t giving his car away totally for free, of course. People who want to win the car can make a donation to Big Green through Omaze for entries into the contest. The money will go towards helping the nonprofit “establish a culture in schools that promotes youth wellness and reduce preventable diet-related health disparities. Just $50 can provide seeds, plants, and supplies for a single school’s garden for a whole year.” Big Green’s ultimate goal is to construct Learning Gardens at every single low-income school in America. The minimum amount you can donate, $10, gets you 100 entries. A higher donation means more entries. The deadline to enter is April 24; the winner will be announced around May 8. Find out more here . + Win Kimbal Musk’s Tesla Model 3 + Big Green Via Electrek Image via Omaze

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Elon Musk’s brother Kimbal is giving away his personal Tesla Model 3

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