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MM: Science Behind Tesla’s Autopilot Upgrade; Clothing That Keeps Chemicals Out Of Water

In this episode of Manufacturing Minute, using clothing to keep chemicals out of water and a look at the tech behind Tesla’s self-driving cars.

Using Clothing To Keep Chemicals Out Of Water

Textile manufacturing is a notoriously dirty industry, and although many clothing companies are working to make it cleaner, others still simply dump their hazardous materials with no effort to treat them.

Juan Hinestroza, a fiber science professor from Cornell University, said recently that he could often determine a trendy color choice by the hue of rivers near textile factories.

In an effort to alleviate that pattern, Hinestroza teamed with chemists from Northwestern University and other institutions to develop fabric that essentially acts as its own environmental filter.

The team infused cotton with a beta-cyclodextrin polymer. The cotton fibers appeared unchanged following that process, but afterwards, they were able to absorb pollutants — and keep them out of the air and waterways — better than untreated cotton or conventional absorption methods.

Researchers said the process offers textile makers a way to produce clothing in a much more environmentally friendly way without completely retooling their operations.

The system could also be applied to other manufacturing processes, with implications for everything from respirator masks to explosive detection to food packaging — which could eventually help detect when food has spoiled.


Could this development herald a new era of cleaner manufacturing? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Tesla’s Latest Autopilot Upgrade

Last month, Tesla announced a major software update to its Autopilot or autonomous driving feature. And now, moving forward it turns out that all Tesla models will come equipped with this new hardware package designed for a complete autonomous driving experience.

Specifically, this means that each Tesla will have eight surround cameras for 360 degree visibility within a 820 foot range, 12 new ultrasonic sensors, forward-facing radar and a new state-of-the-art system to process all the car’s data.

And, while we were all already dreaming of turkey dinners and football games, Tesla released a video on their site that details exactly how these new updates make it possible for a Tesla to drive itself, even in an urban environment.

In the video, Tesla demonstrates the simultaneous complexities that enable a fully autonomous drive. For instance, lane markings are displayed in reds and purples, while motion flow is shown in green squares. Additionally, other objects appear in shades of blue. At the end, the video even demonstrates the vehicle’s ability to autonomously approach and reverse into a parking spot. And, of course, it’s a perfect parking job.

Tesla will likely continue to make available other videos and informational guides for consumers like this one in the coming months, especially as it continues to roll out even more features to enhance the driver’s autonomous driving experience.

What do you think of the tech behind Tesla’s “Autopilot” feature? What would you need to know about the car’s self-driving software before considering purchasing one of these luxury vehicles?

Tweet me your thoughts @MnetNews or leave a comment in the section below.

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