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Proceedings Paper

Imaging laser radar for high-speed monitoring of the environment
Author(s): Christoph Froehlich; M. Mettenleiter; F. Haertl
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Paper Abstract

In order to establish mobile robot operations and to realize survey and inspection tasks, robust and precise measurements of the geometry of the 3D environment is the basis sensor technology. For visual inspection, surface classification, and documentation purposes, however, additional information concerning reflectance of measured objects is necessary. High-speed acquisition of both geometric and visual information is achieved by means of an active laser radar, supporting consistent range and reflectance images. The laser radar developed at Zoller + Froehlich (ZF) is an optical-wavelength system measuring the range between sensor and target surface as well as the reflectance of the target surface, which corresponds to the magnitude of the back scattered laser energy. In contrast to other range sensing devices, the ZF system is designed for high-speed and high- performance operation in real indoor and outdoor environments, emitting a minimum of near-IR laser energy. It integrates a single-point laser measurement system and a mechanical deflection system for 3D environmental measurements. This paper reports details of the laser radar which is designed to cover requirements with medium range applications. It outlines the performance requirements and introduces the two-frequency phase-shift measurement principle. The hardware design of the single-point laser measurement system, including the main modulates, such as the laser head, the high frequency unit and the signal processing unit are discussed in detail. The paper focuses on performance data of the laser radar, including noise, drift over time, precision, and accuracy with measurements. It discusses the influences of ambient light, surface material of the target, and ambient temperature for range accuracy and range precision. Furthermore, experimental results from inspection of tunnels, buildings, monuments and industrial environments are presented. The paper concludes by summarizing results and gives a short outlook to future work.

Paper Details

Date Published: 27 January 1998
PDF: 15 pages
Proc. SPIE 3207, Intelligent Transportation Systems, (27 January 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.300873
Show Author Affiliations
Christoph Froehlich, Zoller+Froehlich GmbH (Germany)
M. Mettenleiter, Zoller+Froehlich GmbH (Germany)
F. Haertl, Zoller+Froehlich GmbH (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3207:
Intelligent Transportation Systems
Marten J. de Vries; Pushkin Kachroo; Kaan Ozbay; Alan C. Chachich, Editor(s)

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