To move our society closer to the reality of fully autonomous vehicles taking over the roadways, a number of different solutions are being tested. One of these solutions is LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), which utilizes lasers to calculate the distance between itself and other objects. With all the buzz around autonomous vehicles and a wide range of options in the market, it can be difficult to fully understand the capabilities of LiDAR and separate fact from fiction. What follows are 11 myths that have emerged regarding LiDAR solutions.
From an article in Electronic Design by Jun Pei.
LiDAR is a very high-tech solution.
LiDAR was invented shortly after the invention of pulsed laser, which releases repetitive pulses of light instead of a continuous wave, in the early 1960s. The principle of LiDAR is actually very simple. Like bats that use sound waves during echolocation to register when the waves bounce back from objects in order to measure distances, LiDAR utilizes light waves from a laser to perform this function. LiDAR sends a pulse and measures the time it takes to reflect back from objects. Since the speed of light is constant, distance can be readily calculated by measuring the time it takes for the beam to return. This fundamental working principle hasn’t changed in the past half-century; thus, the working principle has remained rather straightforward when developing LiDAR technology.
2. LiDAR is expensive.
While this was true for a very long time, mostly due to the fact that laser sources were expensive, the invention of the laser diode dramatically lowered the cost of LiDAR. Today, a visible pulsed laser diode can be obtained for less than $1, accounting for a very small fraction of the total cost to build a LiDAR. Imaging LiDAR allows for more than a single point to be measured, and the high cost of building these systems is typically associated with the manufacturing method. By adopting innovative methods to make these systems, for instance, Cepton’s Micron Motion Technology (MMT) platform, imaging LiDAR can be manufactured at a cost of no more than a couple hundred dollars.
For the rest of the 11 myths CLICK HERE.
Note – If you liked this post click here to stay informed of all of the 3D laser scanning, geomatics, UAS, autonomous vehicle, Lidar News and more. If you have an informative 3D video that you would like us to promote, please forward to email@example.com and if you would like to join the Younger Geospatial Professional movement click here.