Miami, Florida, USA - August 29, 2021:  Tesla Model Y electric car at Tesla Supercharger charging st...

Musk Reads

Tesla’s new battery could improve range by over 15%, reports say

Tesla meets its second generation, SpaceX leaves the ISS, Elon Musk offers his assistance.

Alexander Lyakhovskiy/iStock Unreleased/Getty Images

Tesla meets its second generation… SpaceX leaves the ISS... Elon Musk offers his assistance. It’s the free edition of Musk Reads #282subscribe now to receive two more emails later this week.

Last week, Musk Reads+ members heard from the developers of an all-electric Tundra Buggy designed to get up-close with polar bears. This week, members will receive exclusive coverage of Tesla’s Quarter earning call on January 26. Because of this, Musk Reads+ will first go out on Thursday, January 27, instead of our regularly scheduled Wednesday.

A version of this article appeared in the “Musk Reads” newsletter. Sign up for free here.

Musk quote of the week:Decentralized control of the robots will be critical. — Elon Musk tweeted on January 19 in response to a fan request to not “summon the demon” when it comes to artificial intelligence. Decentralize my Alexa!

Tesla: Battery refresh

Tesla batteries could be receiving a major upgrade, reports Nikkei Asia. According to the publication, “Panasonic will start mass production of new lithium-ion batteries that increase the range of electric vehicles by over 15% as early as 2023, with the first deliveries heading for Tesla.”

Panasonic has not confirmed the rumor, but if these upgraded batteries are produced, Nikkei Asia writes that they will improve range, efficiency, and lower cost of production.

Elsewhere, Tesla is thriving. Despite being the “10th biggest auto manufacturer in North America," Bloomberg reports that” Tesla is the “most productive auto factory in America.”

SpaceX: Frank & beans

On January 19, Elon Musk posted a dusky video of SpaceX rocket launcher “Mechazilla” with the caption “Frank & Beans,” which is a penis joke from the movie There’s Something About Mary. I don’t get it in this context, but maybe you will.

Great!

I don’t want to think about it too hard, so let’s move on. Cargo Dragon is currently on its way back from the International Space Station with “medical research and other scientific investigations.”

Earth can expect the smooth white capsule home around 4:05 p.m. Eastern, just in time for dinner.

Another successful landing for SpaceX.

In other SpaceX news…

  • The company is creating “ruggedized” Starlink dishes for moving vehicles and other “harsh environments”
  • But there aren’t enough satellites — some Starlink customers have been waiting nearly a year for their service to start
  • The European Space Agency’s Ariane 6 might reach Mars before SpaceX, but Musk isn’t worried. Read more on Inverse.

We wanted to give a heartfelt thank you to all of our readers! Let’s welcome some of our newest Musk Reads+ members:

Crypto Method, David P., C. Tocs, C. Gringel, Simona R., D. Gortz, My Mail, Brinley L., Ms. Deniset, J. McPike, Robert D., Fastege, Matt F., Austin A., Adam G., Burgingen, K.B.C., Lars, Edmundo P., Bowen Excavating, Dau V., Svetlana Z., Lakiesha M.

And don’t forget, Musk Reads+ members receive instant access to our ever-expanding archive, premium issues, and much more. Upgrade your membership today!

More stories from Musk’s world

T-minus the internet

A ranked list of everything Musk-related and online, handpicked weekly with bionic precision.

10. Reuters reports that the Pacific island Tonga is “likely to spend a month without internet” following the nearby Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai volcano eruption. Elon Musk seems to be interested in helping, responding to Reuters and asking if “people from Tonga could let us know if it is important for SpaceX to send over Starlink terminals?” It was nice, but then he clarified that sending terminals would be a “hard thing for us to do right now.” Oh, okay.

9. Anyway, the inventor of the PlayStation, 71-year-old Ken Kutaragi, is unimpressed with the metaverse. He also, of course, hopes to capitalize on it.

8. Perhaps the regular-verse will one day have autonomous freight train cars, which a team of former SpaceX engineers is trying to make happen with their company Parallel Systems. I’ve always wanted autonomous freight train cars. It’s for the supply chain!

7. While Parallel Systems chases Matrix-era grain silos, NASA will chase a tiny asteroid following Artemis I’s uncrewed test flight, targeted for this spring. In this context, “tiny” means “smaller than a school bus.”

6. Whole Mars Blog posted a clip of his 40-minute drive with Full-Self Driving engaged, claiming he did not have to override the vehicle’s decisions at any point. He also wrote that the clip challenges the notion that “[Full-Self Driving] will crash and kill you every 36 minutes.” Does it revive you in between?

5. Look at these GIFs of Mars Perseverance rover choking on rocks. They did the robot Heimlich.

4. Look at the stock market choking on inflation. Spit it out!

3. Altos Labs, a Jeff Bezos-backed “cellular rejuvenation” company, wants to avoid getting older. Is it possible? “Why do we age?”

2. Musk’s brain chip interface (BCI) company, Neuralink, recently posted a job listing for a “Clinical Trial Director,” leading publications like Bloomberg to ascertain that Neuralink will begin its first human trials. Although FDA-grade BCIs already exist (and help!), Neuralink hopes to push the technology to “human-AI symbiosis.” Alexa, play “We're All In This Together.”

1. And a piece of Musk history: Two years ago, YouTuber Ryan Trahan drove his Tesla from Austin, Texas, to Chicago, Illinois. It was great, except for the 11 Supercharger stops he had to make in between. Have you ever gone on a Tesla road trip?

The ultra-fine print — This has been Musk Reads #282, the weekly rundown of essential reading about futurist and entrepreneur Elon Musk. I’m Ashley Bardhan, newsletter writer at Inverse.

Why subscribe to Musk Reads+? You’ll be supporting in-depth, high-quality journalism about the world’s most ambitious change-maker, Elon Musk. Tesla investors, SpaceX critics, and anyone with an interest will find something they love in our offerings. Independent journalism is essential now more than ever, and your contributions will help us continue in our mission to deliver interviews and analysis you won’t find anywhere else.

  • Email Ashley directly at ashleybardhan@gmail.com and follow her on Twitter at @ashleybardhan.
  • Follow Inverse on Twitter at @inversedotcom.
  • Have thoughts on today’s newsletter? Send us your questions and feedback at muskreads@inverse.com.

Musk Reads+ is a fully independent operation. We are not Elon Musk, nor are we employed by him. Our job is to report the events we find worthy of a story, giving you an inside look at the worlds of space rockets, electric cars, clean energy, and more. It means firsthand accounts of a SpaceX rocket launch, Tesla insights from third-party analysts, and more.

If you want to support us in our mission, and receive exclusive interviews and analysis, consider contributing with a subscription.