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Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Better LIDAR for Driving

Compact system could be better connected to smaller devices ...  like minidrones.

Compact, Non-Mechanical 3D LiDAR System Could Make Autonomous Driving Safer

Optica.org,  February 9, 2023

Researchers at Japan's Kyoto University have developed a palm-sized non-mechanical three-dimensional (3D) LiDAR system that combines the capabilities of conventional beam-scanning LiDAR systems and flash LiDAR to improve the safety of autonomous driving. Comprised of a dually modulated photonic-crystal laser (DM-PCSEL) and a time-of-flight camera, the system can measure the distance and automatically track the motion of poorly reflective objects. Said Kyoto University's Susumu Noda, "The DM-PCSEL integrates non-mechanical, electronically controlled beam scanning with flash illumination used in flash LiDAR to acquire a full 3D image with a single flash of light. This unique source allows us to achieve both flash and scanning illumination without any moving parts or bulky external optical elements, such as lenses and diffractive optical elements."

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