Tesla Disputes Report of Numerous Defects on Production Line

Investors Business Daily

November 30, 2017

Brian Deagon


More than 90% of Tesla Model S and X autos rolling off the assembly line have defects that need repair, a report from Reuters says, citing unnamed employees of the automaker.


The alleged defects include doors not closing, water leaks, missing parts, loose objects and more, the report said, attributing nine current and former Tesla workers.


Tesla disputed the workers portrayal of the automaker as struggling to produce defect-free vehicles. The report on production defects comes as Tesla is in the midst of ramping production of its Model 3 sedan, which is aimed at the mass market.


According to Tesla workers interviewed by Reuters, while production snags are normal with any new launch, chronic defects with Teslas established Models S and X show a company still struggling to master basic manufacturing. Tesla began manufacturing its first car, the Model S, in 2012 but has been notorious for missing production deadlines.


Tesla responded to Reuters, saying the majority of its post-assembly defects are minor and are resolved in a matter of minutes. A spokesperson said Tesla has a rigorous process that requires all cars to pass more than 500 inspections and tests. Rework on cars after assembly reflects the companys commitment to quality, the spokesperson said.


Our goal is to produce perfect cars for every customer, Tesla said in a prepared statement. Therefore, we review every vehicle for even the smallest refinement.


Tesla in October said it delivered 26,150 vehicles in the third quarter, up 4.5% from the year-ago period, but added that production bottlenecks were crimping its planned ramp-up for the Model 3. Tesla said it made just 260 Model 3 cars, short of an expected 1,500 units for the quarter.


Tesla posted third-quarter results on Nov. 2 that missed earnings expectations by a wide margin and revealed that production woes with its new Model 3 continue, as it pushed out production targets. Tesla had intended to build 5,000 Model 3 sedans per week, starting in the fourth quarter. It now expects to hit that target by late in the first quarter of next year.


Tesla shares closed down 3.2%, to 307.54 in the stock market today. Tesla shares are up 43% this year.


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Boeing Eyes Autonomy in Avionics, Scales Up Operations

The Economic Times

November 30, 2017

Swathy R. Iyer


Hyderabad: Boeing will scale up manufacturing in India by spreading its operations across Hyderabad and other southern cities, said Pratyush Kumar, president, Boeing India.


Boeing in India is now also focused on scaling up manufacturing through partnerships and engineeringboth internally and through partnerships. When it comes to manufacturing, we have increased our sourcing by four folds over the past three years. This year, we expect this number to go beyond $ 1 billion, said Kumar, while pointing to Hyderabad and Bangalore as the aerospace hubs in the country.


Kumar said the company will soon expand its manufacturing and engineering footprint in India. Today, we have around 1,200 people employed in India and our goal is to have 3,000 engineers in the country by 2020 and we are rapidly moving towards the same.


There is a broad engineering capability in India and we will be hiring employees across functionsranging from high-end aeromechanics engineers to computer science engineers and testing engineers. Our engineering base will be spread across Bangalore, Hyderabad and Chennai since we see growth in all these three areas, said Kumar. Kumar also pointed out how the Indian army and navy are both now showing a lot of interest in Apache, Chinook helicopters and maritime surveillance aircraft.


The Indian Navy has been operating the P-81 maritime surveillance aircraft quite successfullythey have eight vehicles on board and have ordered four more. The army has also shown a lot of interest in Apache and 22 Apache and 15 Chinook helicopters are on order. We are happy to see that all three branches of defense services in India are using our platform to increase capabilities, According to Kumar, the Indian army has received clearances, from the Defense Acquisition Council, to purchase six Apaches.


While stating that the aerospace industry in India is still in its early stages, Kumar said For the longest time in India, the aerospace sector was dominated by government-owned PSUs and it is only in the last five or seven years that private players have entered this space. The Indian aerospace industry is expected to find a presence on the global supply chain of global aerospace majors in the future. Major players in the aerospace sector are today working on the concept of autonomy in avionicswhich would enable unpiloted operations of aircraft.


We are always working on next-gen aircraft and emerging technologiessuch as autonomy in avionics and next-gen space vehicles and capsules. We are at the cusp of another revolution in aerospace innovation, said Kumar, who said that India was one of the priority markets for the American aircraft manufacturer.


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Fiat Chrysler Denies Claims of Diesel Test Manipulation

Business Times Singapore

November 29, 2017

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has denied a report that it could be fined for manipulating French diesel emissions tests, saying the allegations have no basis and that its vehicles comply with the law. It added in an e-mailed statement that it hasnt been charged with any offence and is cooperating with French authorities.


French newspaper Le Monde had reported on Monday that the potential fine appears in a report from Frances anti-fraud office; France opened an emissions probe in March, which also includes Peugeot, Renault and Volkswagen (VW).


The French authorities are investigating the car maker for aggravated fraud, a charge that can result in a fine of up to 10% of global revenue, or as much as 9.62 billion euros (US$15.4 billion), Le Monde reported Monday and on Oct. 23.


Fiat Chrysler said that it looks forward to the opportunity to respond to these claims.


The French anti-fraud office declined comment on the news reports.


Since VW admitted in 2015 to using defeat devices that turned off emissions controls during driving, regulators in Europe and the United States have put diesel models under greater scrutiny. Fiat Chrysler was sued in May by the U.S. Justice Department over claims that its diesel-powered pickups and SUVs were outfitted with illegal software.


In May, the European Commission opened an infringement procedure against Italy for failure to fulfil its obligations in how it tests Fiat Chrysler vehicles. Under EU rules, Italy is responsible for certifying Fiat cars because its regional operations are based in the country.


The EU asked Italy to respond to concerns that Fiat Chrysler hadnt sufficiently justified the necessity of a defeat device that turns off emissions controls outside of the test cycle. Such devices are banned, but can be exempted if they are required for safety or to protect the engine.


Italy has strongly backed Fiats case in Europe. The Italian Transport Ministrys tests carried out after the VW scandal showed that Fiat used no unauthorized devices on its vehicles. Italian Transportation Minister Graziano Delrio told an Italian newspaper in May that the Fiat case was different from VWs and that Fiats devices were there to protect engines.


The industrys credibility has been strained by the VW episode. Since the German car maker admitted to rigging its tests, Mitsubishi Motors Corp has acknowledged that it has manipulated fuel-economy tests; Daimler is also checking for possible irregularities in its vehicle certifications.


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An Inside Look: New York-Presbyterian’s AI Command Center

Indian Health Care News

November 29, 2017

At an off-site support building two miles from New York-Presbyterians Weill Cornell Medical Center, registered nurses use artificial intelligence (AI) to monitor whats happening at the hospital.


The space houses various remote administrative stations, including clinical monitoring setups that have computers and six screens from which nurses track real-time physiologic data of patients in the emergency department. RNs also check activity through smart-bed technology, keeps tabs on temperatures of refrigerators that house life-saving medicine, and facilitate call center functions.


New York-Presbyterian dubbed this AI-infused shop the Clinical Operations Center, or CLOC, and the goal is to leverage AI in a 100% capacity within the next 12-14 months. CLOC already is showing the benefits of incorporating AI into daily clinical monitoring of patient care in ways that other hospitals can learn from.


Weve had to innovate and completely reshape traditional methods of healthcare, said Leo Bodden, New York-Presbyterian Hospitals chief technology officer, who oversees CLOC.


Freeing physicians to focus on patients


CLOC analyzes data to pinpoint areas ripe for improvement, make better decisions, identify efficiencies or progress, centralize distributing services, and identify tasks that can be streamlined using AI and other digital tools.


We have successfully been able to lean on highly complex automated systems that greatly decreased redundancy in tasks performed by registered nurses, doctors and other staff, reduced the number of team members physically required to monitor patients, and sizably cut down the amount of time staff spend inputting patient data, Bodden explained.


Within hours after New York-Presbyterian established a remote emergency department patient monitoring program, for example, it began identifying cases where patients needed intervention that had been noted locally.


A CLOC registered nurse uses the Philips IntelliVue platform combined with New York-Presbyterians electronic health record to remotely monitor patients, and if needed, direct the team on the floor to clinically intervene to catch or prevent a negative health event.


CLOC has helped improve clinical outcomes in some cases.


In one instance, a CLOC RN intervened with an elderly patient who presented for weakness. While monitoring remotely, the CLOC team noticed the patients heart and respiratory rates were increasing and connected with the emergency department team to make sure the patient was treated and stabilized.


Another example: New York-Presbyterian modified how it captures patient vitals to offload non-clinical responsibilities and afford clinical staff more time to focus on patients.


To date, CLOC registered nurses involved in this specific program have documented more than 60 great catches, Bodden said. Ultimately, weve learned that distance and perspective proves that a nurse is capable of sitting remotely, and monitoring many patients over a shift, which allows for capturing a better long-term clinical picture, and leads to the identification of opportunities to intervene and improve care sooner.


AI lessons learned


Since creating CLOC, New York-Presbyterian has learned from experience how to take advantage of opportunities that allow it to use automated monitoring of data that previously was collected and monitored manually. CLOC has afforded clinicians access to a comprehensive look at data in real time thats presented in an actionable format that improves operations, and allows for centralization of tasks that had otherwise been spread over many people, Bodden said.


The physiologic monitoring system in the emergency department generates well over 30,000 alarms per week, which used to bog down the clinical teams on the floorthe term is referred to as alarm fatigue because it is so incessant that staff usually end up desensitized.


After going live with CLOC, the number of notifications made to emergency department registered nurses via text or call has gone down to around 100 on average. The team on the floor can de-prioritize the 30,000 nuisance alarms that are not categorized as a priority.


This is an example in which CLOC has found a way to significantly limit distractions and offload non-clinical tasks for staff, by using systems that step in to filter priority versus non-priority alarms, providing staff with more time in their schedule, Bodden said.


The virtual care future


New York-Presbyterian believes the future of medicine is virtual. With this in mind, there is definitely a steady interest to continue to invest in digital health, as well as specific technologies that simplify everyday routine tasks.


When it comes to AI, we anticipate it being a real game-changer across a variety of industries, not just within healthcare, Bodden explained. Ultimately, if AI can identify ways to streamline tasks that would otherwise take valuable time away from medical professionals, then doctors and nurses would be free and able to direct more of their attention toward providing amazing care to patients.


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