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MS Radar - will it still work, and why I hate to see it go...

IamGaryGnu

Member
Jun 16, 2021
391
1,231
Central New Jersey
Hi all,
I know radar is gone on the 3 and Y, and I guess being phased out for the S and X?
I get that per Elon, the vision system is as good or even better.
But, there's one place I can't imagine vision would work as well - and that is in front of, the vehicle in front of you.
Yes, vision can see if the car in front of you is slowing, but what about the stopped/crashed vehicle in front you can NOT see, but your radar could bounce under the car in front of you, and return allowing you to slow down even before the car in front of you?
There's that video (in Sweden? Somewhere in Europe I believe) where the Tesla avoided the accident, and cars were flipping, etc. - and I've seen the radar shown on the Ininiti website ages ago, how the radar lets the car "know" what's going on forward where it can't see (like a fruit truck that hit a bump, fruit/watermelons coming out on the road, and then a car stopping short as a result, a car 2 cars in front of yours - THAT'S where I think radar could still have a use.
Okay, done with my rambling.
 

GtiMart

Active Member
Nov 13, 2019
1,240
1,082
Quebec City, Canada
I think everyone is giving radar a lot more power than it really has. Radars bounce on all sorts of things, in a fairly unpredictable fashion, so their results are not easy to understand and apply logic on. They give a lot of false positives. There's a reason why they're being abandoned (for full self driving).
 

IamGaryGnu

Member
Jun 16, 2021
391
1,231
Central New Jersey
thank you for the reply. I'd embrace any tech that can help me avoid an accident - but if it doesn't work as expected that's no good either. I'm just wondering if it, or infra red, or whatever can go "beyond sight" - maybe like an automobile Sword of Omens!!!! Thanks!
 
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GtiMart

Active Member
Nov 13, 2019
1,240
1,082
Quebec City, Canada
Having interconnected cars, cars that talk to each other live over wifi, might eventually help. IT won't make your car see pedestrians but maybe the car in front can, and can tell you.
This will require an act of god to force car manufacturers to talk to each other :rolleyes:
 
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IamGaryGnu

Member
Jun 16, 2021
391
1,231
Central New Jersey
Having interconnected cars, cars that talk to each other live over wifi, might eventually help. IT won't make your car see pedestrians but maybe the car in front can, and can tell you.
This will require an act of god to force car manufacturers to talk to each other :rolleyes:
thanks - Mercedes has their system, forgot what it is called, where I guess it almost works like Waze, but to Mercedes and back to your GPS - alerting you to traffic, etc. with other Mercedes. I'd love the future where as you said, cars communicate with each other - would make it super simple for 4 ways stops where the cars have some sort of handshaking and agree who is going next, or cars can let others know they're turning, etc.
 

uthatcher

Member
Dec 7, 2020
260
1,072
Los Angeles
I don’t know what’s changed on the refreshed cars, but my Plaid Autopilot and FSD work way better than the 2021 LRS I recently sold or my partner’s Y.

The Plaid is much smoother in ever action it performs. Changing lanes, weighting the steering wheel (doesn’t need as much force on the wheel), steering input, but best of all the TACC works WAY better. The car isn’t rushing up on the vehicle in front of it and then slamming on the brakes. It monitors the vehicle in front much better.
I don’t know what Tesla did, and I only have about 150 miles on the car, but it seems much, much better in this department.
 
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Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
9,129
7,843
Visalia, CA
...I know radar is gone on the 3 and Y, and I guess being phased out for the S and X?...
If current S and X will accept the upcoming pure vision FSD beta, then it will be an abrupt change.

You can refuse to download the firmware if you don't like radarless.

I get that per Elon, the vision system is as good or even better.
It's a prediction and has not been proven or tested out by third parties.
...Yes, vision can see if the car in front of you is slowing, but what about the stopped/crashed vehicle in front you can NOT see, but your radar could bounce under the car in front of you, and return allowing you to slow down even before the car in front of you?
There's that video (in Sweden? Somewhere in Europe I believe) where the Tesla avoided the accident, and cars were flipping, etc. - and I've seen the radar shown on the Ininiti website ages ago, how the radar lets the car "know" what's going on forward where it can't see (like a fruit truck that hit a bump, fruit/watermelons coming out on the road, and then a car stopping short as a result, a car 2 cars in front of yours - THAT'S where I think radar could still have a use...
Taller Tesla cars can have cameras higher to see more than 1 car in front which in theory would catch up with radar in the sencario above.
Okay, done with my rambling.

What I'll miss is that radar allows TACC even when vision is impaired such as your headlights are off at night, fog, heavy rain, smoke, wildfire evacuations... and you can't do that with pure vision only:

Here's my car at night at 10:15 PM and the headlights were off. The Autosteer would not work but the TACC still worked flawlessly by keeping a safe distance and not rear-ending the car in front.


1n5o2RK.jpg
 
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Battpower

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Oct 10, 2019
2,086
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Uk
What about in heavy rain when you got AP unavailable type messages?

Regardless of relative merits, (and I am of the camp that would sooner have one infallible, capable sensor than multiple one that have to negotiate which one is most correct or merge info from disparate source types) it isn't a comfortable feeling that one minute radar gives some bottom line safety - and phantom braking isn't a thing) then suddenly you don't even need radar and a camera based system that can easily get blinded is totally capable of doing a faultless job.
 

Battpower

Supporting Member
Supporting Member
Oct 10, 2019
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Uk
Also isn't comfortable that even when Green’s videos showed possible links with shadows, radar return clusters and bridges, it has taken Tesla SOOO long to come up with the ingenious solution (to what? Non existent phantom braking?) of scratching radar. It is part of my car! How can they just delete that functional part without either a safety recall relating to serious performance / safety issue or at least deciding to fit a proven alternative system that exceeds the performance or original kit in every way
 

Tam

Well-Known Member
Nov 25, 2012
9,129
7,843
Visalia, CA
Also isn't comfortable that even when Green’s videos showed possible links with shadows, radar return clusters and bridges, it has taken Tesla SOOO long to come up with the ingenious solution (to what? Non existent phantom braking?) of scratching radar. It is part of my car! How can they just delete that functional part without either a safety recall relating to serious performance / safety issue or at least deciding to fit a proven alternative system that exceeds the performance or original kit in every way

LIDAR camp says those concerns are solved with the addition of LIDAR.

Tesla uses cheap radar then complains it's too hard to make sensor fusion work. It's really good at detecting MOVING obstacles even in total darkness or zero visibility in fog but not so good with STATIONARY obstacles. The way Tesla uses radar is described below:


That's why others have added LIDAR. Radar is very good at detecting speed and moving obstacles while LIDAR is very good at detecting stationary obstacles as well.
 

Battpower

Supporting Member
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Oct 10, 2019
2,086
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Uk
Another issue is that human sight is not just about stereoscopic vision from a humanoid camera system. Eyes move in their sockets and the whole head moves so the brain processes far more than just multiple flat images. Nothing in the car's vision system can say 'hey, that tree is in the way, I'll move my head around to get a better understanding of what I think I'm seeing.'

Humans also shift their concentration - ok, can get distracted! - based on where they determine greatest need / benefit. Treating every pixel in a 360 bev as having equal significance as a starting point makes for an arduous task sifting out wheat from chaff.
 
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IamGaryGnu

Member
Jun 16, 2021
391
1,231
Central New Jersey
Thanks for the replies all. When I test drove a Model 3 and Model Y in May (back to back, so don't remember which had this happen) at one point the screen showed a car in front of the truck graphics - which I thought was outstanding, and the SA mentioned that was the radar (the truck was way too tall for a samara to have seen over it) - now, maybe a camera system could have seen the car in front of the truck at a curve, bend, etc. and then "remembered it" and maybe saw shadows ahead, or around the truck, but I really don't think so.
Stopped at a light right behind the truck, I could only see the back of the truck, and the screen showed me the car in front of the truck moving - THAT to me was the future - sensors detected enemy vessel, I mean, otherwise "invisible" car - and using the same logic, if the car in front of the truck was stopped suddenly, I sure couldn't see it, I'm pretty sure TeslaVision couldn't see it, but the radar would have "known."
Whether radar or LIDAR (I have 3 vacuums with LIDAR, amazing!) I'd love to have as much warning, protection and assistance as possible.
But I also get the radar system has it's issues, can't detect a stopped fire truck (I'll read the link above after this post) - and I imagine maybe sharper cameras, stronger MCU, better algorithms, but I don't see how the vision system will be able to detect things it can't see.
FWIW, my German luxury cars that have driver's assistance, night view/night vision, etc. all crap out when there's snow falling on the front, or messing with the windshield, including loss of radar.
 

BigNick

Infamous Fat Sweaty Guy
Dec 3, 2017
1,296
1,548
Pennsylvania, USA
Another issue is that human sight is not just about stereoscopic vision from a humanoid camera system. Eyes move in their sockets and the whole head moves so the brain processes far more than just multiple flat images. Nothing in the car's vision system can say 'hey, that tree is in the way, I'll move my head around to get a better understanding of what I think I'm seeing.'

Humans also shift their concentration - ok, can get distracted! - based on where they determine greatest need / benefit. Treating every pixel in a 360 bev as having equal significance as a starting point makes for an arduous task sifting out wheat from chaff.
Even focusing on "what is moving and what is stationary" isn't enough to remove unimportant information.

When I"m zooming along at high speed, I know where the road is, and what potential obstacles are instinctively. I see leaves on trees blowing, blades of grass moving, et cetera, but don't focus on it or process it unless something large is in those areas (such as a deer). That's not trivial to program into a computer processing 4K (or even 2K) images from more than half a dozen cameras at 30 or 60 fps.

Sometimes, however, I'm too focused on ignoring the "background" stuff and over-react when I do see an unexpected animal, even stationary, near the road edge - usually braking. I suppose this is the human equivalent of phantom braking?
 

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