The new chip-based beam steering device allows for a smaller, cheaper Lidar.
Researchers have developed a new beam-steering technology based on a chip that offers a promising path to developing small, high-performance, and cost-effective lidar systems. Light detection and range, also known as Lidar, is a technology that uses laser pulses in order to obtain 3D data about an object or scene. It has a variety of uses, including autonomous driving, biomedical sensors, free-space optic communications, virtual reality, and 3D holography.
Hao Hu, the leader of the research team at Technical University of Denmark, said that optical beam steering was a key component of lidar systems. However, mechanical beam steering systems were bulky, expensive and sensitive to vibration. They also had a limited speed. The chip-based optical arrays (OPAs), which can steer light non-mechanically, have a poor beam quality, and their field of vision is typically less than 100 degrees.