Tesla boss uses his car to mine Bitcoin and Ethereum

Tesla owner Siraj Raval uses his Model 3 to mine cryptocurrency.

Syrah Laval

Siraj Raval tried almost every method to mine cryptocurrency from his 2018 Tesla Model 3.

He is at large Bitcoin He installed mining software on his Apple Mac mini M1 and powered the computer by plugging the inverter into a 12-volt power socket located in the center console of the car.

He also connects interconnected graphics processing units or GPUs to his Tesla “trunk” to run these machines through the car’s internal batteries.

Although this may invalidate his car warranty, Raval said it was worth it.

When the price of Ether reached its peak in 2021, he claimed to make a net profit of $800 per month.

Bitcoin miner Alejandro de la Torre (Alejandro de la Torre) said that in the end, mining from Tesla is like connecting to any other power source.

“The main component is the price of electricity. If it is cheaper through electric vehicles, so be it,” said De La Torre.

How to use Tesla to mine cryptocurrency

Back in 2018, Chris Allessi-he told CNBC that he was the first ever electric car dealer in Wisconsin-decided to patch his Tesla.

This is nothing new to Alessi, also known as K-Man On his YouTube channel, he builds customized electric cars in his free time and bills himself as the Hyundai Doc Brown. This is a role in the movie “Back to the Future”, where he converts the car into a time machine.

“I like electricity. I like to destroy things and build things. You give me a motor and I give you a finished product,” he said.

Similar to Raval, Allessi tried several different methods to turn his Tesla Model S into a crypto mining device.

In the industry, crypto mining is an energy-intensive process in which machines around the world contribute their computing power to the entire network to create new coins and verify transactions in existing tokens. They deal with complex mathematical equations by running specialized software. To participate, basically you only need a computer and power supply.

Alessi tried to mine Bitcoin by plugging the Bitmain Antminer S9 (a mining device specially used to mint the world’s most popular cryptocurrency) directly into his car battery and using a power inverter. The inverter adjusts the voltage of the Tesla battery to a level compatible with his Antminer.

Allesi also successfully used the vehicle’s internal firmware to mine altcoins.

“It’s not a big deal,” he said of the process. He used the built-in computer and screen in the car to navigate to a webpage he set up specifically for mining the popular privacy token Monero. “I can run the mining program in the browser,” Alessi explained.

Of all the techniques Raval has tried, he said that the most profitable method is to hack into Tesla’s internal computer and plug the GPU directly into the car’s electric motor.

“This is a computer on wheels…it’s so simple to hack into this computer car,” Laval said, describing the process as hijacking the car’s internal firmware to allow additional power usage.

Tesla hacker and crypto miner Thomas Sohmers believes that this step is unnecessary.

“The power of this car has exceeded 100 kilowatts. Anything connected to the car is only a small part of it. There is no need to do anything. [Raval] Said he was doing it. It doesn’t make sense technically,” Somers said.

From there, Raval connects 5 GPUs to his Tesla battery and runs a hash algorithm to mine Ethereum.

Professional-level miners told CNBC that, theoretically, logistics inspections.

“These mechanisms are all there,” explained Whit Gibbs, CEO and founder of Bitcoin mining service provider Compass.

“You have a power source, you have space, and you have the ability to increase cooling. The power provided by the battery is definitely enough to start the ASIC and run it,” Gibbs continued.

Tesla owner Siraj Raval uses his Model 3 to mine cryptocurrency.

Syrah Laval

Is it profitable but worth the trouble?

Whether Tesla crypto mining proves to be profitable has a lot to do with when drivers buy vehicles.

For example, Allessi bought his car before January 2017, which means that his grandfather participated in a program in which he can supercharge for free and unlimited for the entire life of the vehicle.

In 2018, he estimated that within a 60-hour window, he will earn $10 worth of Bitcoin, all of which are profitable because he does not have to pay for electricity.

But even if it is profitable, it is hardly worth it, he said.

“Why install this kind of wear on cars worth between $40,000 and $100,000?” he said. “And now, even if the price of Bitcoin has risen sharply, the difficulty has risen with it… In the same period of time, with exactly the same equipment, I might see Bitcoin worth $1 or $2.”

The mining of Monero was also fruitless.

“Is it effective? Yes. Does it have anything worth making profit in any way, shape or form? No,” Alessi explained.

Laval is more optimistic about the profit potential of his Tesla.

Although he has to charge the car, Raval said that the battery itself is “almost none,” so he is worth the money.

Raval’s car can travel 320 miles per charge, and it costs about $10 to $15 to charge. If he drives for a few hours a day, he needs to charge it every one and a half weeks, and his monthly bills range from $30 to $60.

Raval estimates that he uses Tesla batteries to mine about 20 hours a day. Although the price of altcoins such as Ethereum is prone to volatility, Raval has adopted other support measures to ensure profitability.

First, he bet his Ethereum on “Midas.Investments”, a custody crypto investment platform that provides an annual return rate of 23% for his investment. He also never cashes in U.S. dollars, so his crypto reserves continue to grow.

Raval also bought the GPU he used on eBay, which helped save money.

Taking all these steps into consideration, Raval stated that during 2021, his monthly income ranges from US$400 to US$800, and this company can be profitable even during the downturn in the cryptocurrency market.

Somers said that he was the first person to set foot in Model 3 in 2018, and he told CNBC that such a high profit is impossible.

“My best estimate of the GPU hash rate in Model 3 is about 7-10 MH/s. Currently, calculated at 10 MH/s, before deducting any fees, this will generate approximately USD 13.38 in Ether income. “Somers told CNBC.

Alessi told CNBC that he no longer bothered about mining.

“It’s too difficult… I can make more money by working at McDonald’s,” he said.

Alessi does offer a choice. “If you work in a company, you’d better hide miners on the ceiling instead of mining with cars,” he said of drawing free electricity from employers.

But for Raval, mining cryptocurrency from his Tesla is more than just a gimmick. Rather, this is an important part of his plan to make his Tesla a fully autonomous robotic taxi that can earn cryptocurrency at any time without driving.

Although Tesla CEO Elon Musk touted the potential of vehicles to become autonomous robotic taxis, Tesla is still far from autonomous driving today. Nevertheless, Laval believes in this future.

“It will use the proceeds from transportation services and cryptocurrency mining services to pay for its own expenses, such as repairs, electricity bills, and upgrades, and invest it in a diversified portfolio of emerging crypto community networks,” he said. Say.

Correction: The article has been updated to reflect the fact that Siraj Raval has only tried Ethereum and Bitcoin mining. Some technical details regarding Raval’s attack on his car have also been corrected. The story has also been revised to include other voices questioning Raval’s mining methods.