Recent developments in autonomous vehicle instrumentation has led to advancements in laser based LiDAR sensors. For these type of systems, sensor performance is dependent on fast response time and good contrast (SNR) at long distances. Careful design for the optical transmitter assembly is paramount to achieving good device performance, and has become a primary differentiator between emerging LiDAR technologies. These systems rely heavily on both the source emitter quality as well as the conditioning and delivery of collimated beams using passive optical components. Most available sources, from semiconductor to fiber lasers, have the necessary spectral characteristics, but lack the required beam quality for long distance propagation and detection. In order to overcome these limitations, LightPath leverages decades of experience in precision molded aspheres and fiber delivery systems to achieve quality collimation and astigmatic beam correction. These capabilities are applicable to a broad range of optical system configurations, and therefore transcend the differences in LiDAR system architecture. We will explore the basic optical requirements for emerging LiDAR transmitter systems and discuss their common reliance on precision optical components.
Andrew A. Chesworth and Jeremy Huddleston, "Precision optical components for lidar systems developed for autonomous vehicles," Proc. SPIE 10561, Next-Generation Optical Communication: Components, Sub-Systems, and Systems VII, 105610J (Presented at SPIE OPTO: January 31, 2018; Published: 29 January 2018); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2297100.
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