Tesla may begin production of a humanoid robot, known as Optimus, as early as next year, CEO Elon Musk said on Thursday.
The electric car manufacturer first unveiled the robot, also known as the Tesla Bot, at its “AI Day” in August 2021, saying it would be a general-purpose machine capable of performing a wide range of tasks.
“We have a chance to start production of the first version of Optimus, next year,” Musk said Thursday at the opening of a new Tesla car assembly plant in Austin, Texas, where he appeared on stage — in a cowboy hat and sunglasses.
However, Tesla has not yet presented a working prototype of the robot, and has not announced details about the progress of development. At the same time, Musk said that the robot would be friendly and would be able to take on dangerous or similar, boring tasks. For example, he will be able to go to the grocery store.
According to the plan, the robot will be based on a fully autonomous Dojo computer and neural networks capable of recognizing the world and navigating it. The robot’s height is about 173 cm, weight — 57 kg. The robot can walk at a speed of 8 km/h and lift objects up to 20 kg. It is planned that it will work with the help of neural networks that “recognize the world and understand how to navigate it.” The manufacturer plans to use the same technologies as for the autonomous driving function in Tesla. According to him, Tesla can already be considered the world’s largest robotics company, since their electric cars are like semi—intelligent robots on wheels.
He also promised that the company would make sure that Optimus “turned out to be a safe assistant, not a Terminator.” Thus, the head of Tesla called the main difference between a smart car and a cinematic killer robot. In conclusion, Musk noted that robots can change the world to a greater extent than cars.