Tesla ruffled more than a few feathers by removing radar from newly built cars in May 2021. Just over a year later and it looks like they are preparing for its return.
On June 7 Tesla registered a new high resolution radar unit with the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and their Office of Engineering & Technology Authorization and Evaluation Divisions. (via @iamkellex)
The registration allows Tesla to sell vehicles in the United States with the units installed.
The documents filed with the FCC don’t list Tesla’s intended use for these new radar units, but it could form part of the unreleased Hardware 4.0 (HW 4.0).
According to hacker and Tesla enthusiast @greentheonly, these new radar units have similar frequency ranges compared to the Bosch and Continental units the automaker previously used. However, it appears as though they will be used for imaging, similar to how LiDAR maps surroundings using a laser beam.
Green explains that high resolution radar has all the same benefits as radar, but at a higher resolution and a potentially higher frame rate.
Tesla currently builds vehicles with HW 3.0, otherwise known as the Full Self-Driving (FSD) computer. It is believed that Tesla will introduce the next-generation computer with the launch of the Cybertruck. Based on hints in the source code it will be significantly different than its predecessor.
This doesn’t mean owners with HW 3.0 won’t be able to get FSD. Musk previously explained that the different computers will both be able to offer FSD, but the differences between them can be likened to how some humans are better drivers than others, but both will still be safer than the average human however.
Whether Tesla will offer existing customers a free upgrade to the new computer, like it did after the introduction of HW3, remains to be seen.
You can view the documents filed with the FCC here.