Cummins Beats Tesla to Public Launch of Prototype Electric Semi-Truck

❝ Engine maker Cummins has introduced an all-electric heavy duty truck ahead of Tesla.

The 18,000-pound rig with maximum payload of 44,000 pounds was shown…at Cummins’ tech center in Columbus, Ohio. A concept vehicle at this point, the truck was built by Roush with Cummins’ electric drive and is targeted at companies needing local deliveries.

❝ Cummins says its truck, named AEOS after a four-winged horse-driven chariot from Greek mythology, will go 100 miles per charge. It will need an hour to recharge. That will be reduced to 20 minutes by 2020.

Tesla, which will launch its new from the ground up semi next month, has been reported to be preparing it to go 200-300 mile per charge.

❝ Other automakers, including Ford, are said to be conducting research on entering this new regional route electric truck market segment centered around a home charging base.

In June, Cummins announced it will be making electric drivetrains for buses by 2019. For now, that will be a priority over the electric truck.

Whichever way the competition swings, truckers will be the winners…when we’re back to sensible government and a renewed commitment to environmental health. Our whole population, the world will be better off for this kind of competition.

This Robot Can Sew 1.2 Million T-Shirts a Year

❝ In a soon-to-open Arkansas factory, 21 production lines manned by the Sewbot will be capable of making 1.2 million T-shirts a year–and the ripple effects will soon be felt in garment factories in the developing world.

Once the system is fully operational, each of the 21 production lines in the factory will be capable of making 1.2 million T-shirts a year, at a total cost of production that can compete in terms of cost with apparel companies that manufacture and ship clothing from the lowest-wage countries in the world. The factory will be one of the first to use a technology that could herald immense changes in how the apparel industry works.

❝ …Sewbot–SoftWear Automation’s clothes-making robot–was developed at Georgia Tech’s Advanced Technology Development Center in a process that began a decade ago. In 2012, researchers got a grant from the Defense Department’s tech innovation wing DARPA to develop the concept and formed a company to commercialize the technology. By 2015, the company was selling a more basic version of the robot that could make bath mats and towels. The newest version, to be deployed in the Little Rock factory, can make T-shirts and partially sew jeans.

All the questions relevant to automation count in this instance – even in low wage countries like Bangledesh. Before anyone decides to sneer at the fate of workers made redundant in Bangladesh, don’t kid yourselves by thinking American politicians, American corporations are any more advanced and humanist than in South Asia.