The Tesla Gigafactories are subjects of immense interest for electric vehicle enthusiasts. And drone paparazzi have given us glimpses into Tesla plants on many occasions for insights into the development stages of upcoming models.
But drone operators might face difficulties around Giga Shanghai this month. From June 1, 2023, the plant’s aerial control has been strengthened and upgraded, according to a drone pilot. This indicates that Tesla has likely established mechanisms to avoid prying eyes in the sky.
Drone operator Wu Wa estimates that a new Tesla Model 3 is under “intense testing,” which could be the reason why drone flying is restricted over Giga Shanghai. He says the flight height for drones is limited to 30 meters around the plant, and there’s signal interference.
His drone takes off 1.2 miles from Giga Shanghai, but as he attempts to get closer, the remote loses the picture transmission signal and the screen goes gray, said Wa in the video. The drone control area has been expanded with approval from the local government and Chinese drone maker DJI, according to him.
Tesla might be testing the Model 3 Project Highland at this facility. Or could it be hiding operations related to the $25,000 mass-market EV? It’s hard to speculate at this stage, but drone restrictions suggest that activities at Giga Shanghai are a tightly guarded secret.
Last month, the facelifted Model 3 was seen testing in California. It appeared to have redesigned headlamps, taillamps, and rear diffuser. The test mule also seemed to have updated cameras for the Hardware 4 Autopilot Computer. Moreover, the camouflaged prototype had a vertical turn signal, as opposed to the horizontal LED indicators on the current cars.
Gallery: 2022 Tesla Model 3
Drone restrictions aren’t uncommon around Tesla gigafactories. Last year, a drone flying unusually high around Giga Berlin forced a passenger aircraft to reroute while it was attempting to land at the nearby Berlin-Brandenburg airport. The instance, reported by the German newspaper Tagesspiegel, triggered a formal investigation into the matter.
Early this year, Tesla banned drones from overhead flyovers at Giga Berlin for unknown reasons but allowed pilots to operate them from a distance. It’s also possible that Tesla simply wants to avoid unsafe aerial interferences at Giga Shanghai. What are your thoughts on the drone control at Giga Shanghai? Leave your thoughts in the comments.