Byron Moyer, in a Semiconductor Engineering story, writes how “lidar is likely to be added to the list of sensors that future cars will use to help with navigation and safety.”
The article extensively quotes Pravin Venkatesan, senior director of ASIC design at Velodyne Lidar, on a variety of lidar topics. In discussing lidar sensor form factor for automotive applications, Pravin says:
“For the robotaxi market, people are less concerned about [aesthetics]. If you talk about consumer vehicles, that’s where solid-state lidar becomes a new offering, where they can be integrated into the grills, into the windshields, into the sides.”
Pravin also comments on how lidar solutions must be commercially robust over the long term, saying:
“There are multiple types of scanners, which you can manually go and build. But the reliable ones are all still mechanical scanners, which can pass the test of time.”
The article discusses lidar wavelengths, comparing 905 nanometers (nm) and 1550 nm lidar systems. It cited a Velodyne blog post that looked at wavelengths through the lenses of safety, water absorption, power consumption and component supply chains. The post concluded “it is clear that 905 nm lidar technology is the best fit for engineering, development and production needs of autonomous vehicles and Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems (ADAS).”
While the article primarily focuses on automotive, it does also note lidar is being used in other applications. Pravin adds, “The whole lidar industry is not just concentrated on automotive. There are a lot of other industries in terms of last-mile deliveries, drones, and automated delivery units.”
Lidar technology has a bright future, delivering autonomy and safety to a wide range of industries.