Tesla Reveals Robotic Charger Prototype
We’ve heard about Tesla’s plans for an articulating charging cable that automatically finds its way to the Tesla’s charging port with no human assistance, but seeing a working prototype is the stuff of future-cybernetic-overlord nightmares. This is almost certainly how those human-hunting sentinel robots from the Matrix movies first came to be, so thanks, Tesla.
If you can look past the possibility of being enslaved in your own home by a 240-volt robot snake, Tesla’s charger prototype is actually pretty cool. Shown doing its thing in this video, the segmented, metal, snake-like cable could potentially be used at Tesla’s supercharger stations or in home garages. Tesla drivers would just pull their cars up next to it and let the automated cable do the rest.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted about it in December of 2014 saying, “Btw, we are actually working on a charger that automatically moves out from the wall & connects like a solid metal snake. For realz.”
It starts out pointing straight up in the air, and then wakes up when the 2015 Tesla Model S’s charging port pops open. It wobbles around for a split second before catching a whiff of the port and then slowly starts bending towards it. It then locks on to the port’s location, engages and the port light begins flashing to let you know its working.
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Why it matters
It’s not hard to imagine Tesla retrofitting its nation-wide Supercharger network with these things. Think of them as the future version of a full-service gas station attendant, only a robot snake instead of a guy in coveralls. Maybe it’ll wash the windshield, too.Tesla currently lists 487 Supercharger stations in the U.S. and Canada, with more on the way. They could also conceivably be sold as an accessory to the Tesla Wall Connector home charging system, as long as customers aren’t terrified of them.
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