ADAS (Advanced Driver Assist System) LiDAR is one of the leading technologies currently being utilized in the development of autonomous vehicles and self-driving cars. Autonomous drones, robots and vehicles can utilize LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) for navigation, obstacle detection and collision avoidance.
MEMS (micro-electromechanical system) LiDAR technologies are currently being developed for use in autonomous driving as well as unmanned systems such as UGVs (unmanned ground vehicles) and UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles). These use tiny MEMS mirrors, etched onto silicon wafers, to accurately deflect the laser beam. The MEMS mirror arrays can be used to replace traditional beam deflection units, which are usually spinning devices that are mechanically complex and prone to friction and wear.
Doppler LiDAR uses the frequency shift of moving objects (caused by the Doppler effect) to directly measure velocity. The reflected backscatter signal is recorded and mixed with a reference laser beam of known frequency. The frequency shift of the mixed signal is used to calculate the velocity.
Both LiDAR and radar make measurements using reflected pulses. LiDAR uses laser signals, whereas radar uses radio waves.
LiDAR for robotic navigation provides crucial distance measurement information relating to surroundings and the vehicle’s position in relation to objects. Scanning LiDAR can provide a 360 degree sweep of the vehicle’s surroundings, presenting a two dimensional ‘view’ of the vehicle’s position in order to be able to navigate a clear course to its destination.