LIDAR Scanner / TOF

Headlight control

IR laser diodes, Si PIN photodiode arrays or APD arrays are used in Time of Flight (TOF) systems such as LIDAR scanners for distance measurement. You can find more information in our rangefinder overview here.We offer customized sensor arrays, to support the specific requirements of different systems. We also offer the possibility to integrate a Trans impedance Amplifier (TIA) array on chip in the same package with an APD array. This offers great advantages in noise characteristics and saves space and cost.

Safety means protecting drivers, passengers and pedestrians from injury and it has become an increasingly important topic for car manufacturers. Active safety systems, such as automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane keeping, or other advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) are developed and implemented in an increasing number of cars. Particularly, as the EU set the goal to reach zero traffic fatalities, and as functions such as automatic emergency braking have been added to the tests for the NCAP 5 star rating.

The goal of AEB systems is to prevent accidents, or if that is not possible at least to weaken the impact of an accident by drastically reducing the speed before a crash, with special attention to pedestrian protection in the city. Usually a sensor fusion of several different sensor systems including radar, LIDAR and cameras deliver the necessary input data with enough redundancy for the partial automation with such active safety ADAS functions.

A LIDAR device works with a pulsed IR laser diode, which sends out short light pulses. Some systems are scanning continuously with a mirror and other systems illuminate the whole area at once. The emitted light is reflected from every surface of the obstacles in its path, with a reflection ratio depending on the material and colour. A sensor array detects the returning light, determining the time of flight needed to travel from the light source to the object, and back to the detector. Knowing that the speed of light is 3*108 m/s, this gives the distance of objects. The sensor array in civil vehicles is usually a Silicon Photodiode or APD array, Silicon is mainly used for cost reasons, operating in the near infrared range between 800 – 950nm. InGaAs can also be used for the sensor, in combination with a laser diode at higher IR wavelength, for example at 1550nm.

For short range measurements, such as reverse parking, we also offer a TOF CMOS sensor, which works with an indirect time of flight (TOF) measurement as 3D camera. An infrared laser diode or LED, or an array of these, is used as active illumination and sends out short light pulses. The CMOS sensor determines the time of flight of the reflected, incident light with each of its pixels, creating a 3D picture. This CMOS sensor is a special, high-speed charge transfer device, which is suitable for distances up to about 10m.

Operating Temperature In special SMD package -40°C to + 125°C
Special plastic mold devices -40°C to +105°C
Customization possible, please contact us for further information
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