Because the Tesla models are primarily controlled be software, using sensors and network routing algorithms, the feasibility of highway tandem driving now becomes a simple reality.
Tandem driving was researched back in the early 1980s at some of the major universities, such as UC Berkeley. Its a technology that allows cars to drive within inches of each other on long stretches of road, such as Highway 5 between Stockton and Bakersfield, California. While 5 to 10 cars are driving together, they can drive much faster, say over 100 miles per hour. Using proximity sensors and software, they can avoid collision and steer as one vehicle.
With the introduction of a software controlled electric car, the motor and battery of all the cars in the tandem could be used as one to maximize speed and efficiency. Using GPS, the driver would simply plug in its destination address, and the car's computer would take of the rest; just as a packet with a destination IP address travels across the Internet.
The computer in one of the tandem cars would be designated as the "Tandem Controller". It would take control and manage the usage of all the motors and batteries in the tandem to maximize their efficiency and determine when a charge is needed.
Depending on origin and destination, a single car may be apart of several tandems in route to its ultimate destination.
The benefits of this type of free-way driving are increased speed, safer driving, increased efficiency, reduced driver stress, more human interaction. It would essentially be a hybrid between the current highway system and high speed rail.
Let's do it!
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