Tesla Semi spotted with LiDAR setup on front hood

Tesla Semi with lidar spotted within the wild

Tesla has begun delivering the Semi truck. Nevertheless, PepsiCo and Tesla drivers need to forgo driver-assist features like Autopilot and Full Self-Driving. That is despite the truck being equipped with an array of cameras. But it surely seems Tesla is testing a special imaging hardware system as a Semi sporting LiDAR hardware was seen in Palo Alto by our friends over at The Kilowatts.

On closer inspection, the hardware mounted at the electrical Semi’s hood was a 6D road lidar from Xenomatix.

Cross-checking with information on the corporate’s website confirms that the device works for scanning and surveying. Here is Xenomatix’s description of the gadget:

“XenomatiX uses the 6D road lidar to measure and collect high-precision and up-to-date data of road networks or sections requested by the client. The info collected includes raw digitized road data including surface damages, surface conditions in addition to road markings. The info is collected using a real solid-state lidar sensor XenoTrack mounted on any vehicle. Any road may be digitized from community road, national road, highway but additionally harbor quays, airport runways, and even off-road. Depending on the required usage of the info, different formats and further analyses are offered.” (via Teslarati)

Last August, a Cybertruck was spotted with the identical imaging device on the hood. Speculation on the time suggested Tesla was using it to finalize the positioning of the pickup truck’s cameras, so it stands to reason that Tesla is performing similar tests with the Semi to verify what its cameras are seeing and its computer is estimating with those multiple views, before adding Autopilot to the fleet.

A Tesla Model Y equipped with lidar was spotted in Canada last March. That vehicle was getting used for “ground-truthing” ahead of the discharge of FSD Beta in Canada.

Tesla caused a stir when it removed radar from its latest cars last yr. Nevertheless, a few registrations with the FCC suggest the hardware is making a comeback with Hardware 4.0 (HW4).

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