LIDAR Technology – Like it or Not, It’s Here to Stay
Autonomy requires gobs of sensors, and although Elon Musk and Tesla have publicly said “no thanks” to laser-based lidar sensing in favor of cameras, most of the rest of the industry expects to augment cameras with this “light detection and ranging” technology. For the past few years, the race has been on to replace those spendy spinny laser scanners festooning the roofs of the current crop of robo-taxis and autonomous prototype test vehicles with cheaper, smaller, lighter designs that are easier to integrate into the bodywork. At CES, plenty of options were found featuring lasers that still move, mirrors that move (microelectromechanical systems, or MEMS), and completely solid-state flash lidar concepts. One even involves cameras to interest Mr. Musk.