This course provides an introduction to the exciting and rapidly growing field of light detection and ranging (LIDAR) on autonomous vehicles. The rapid growth of new lasers and detectors, along with miniaturization of computers and high-speed data acquisition systems, is opening many new opportunities for LIDAR systems in applications that require smaller and more portable instruments. Since the invention of LIDAR in the 1960s, systems have evolved from large instruments mounted in unmovable laboratories or on trucks and trailers, to smaller and dramatically more portable instruments. This course reviews the basic principles that govern the design of any LIDAR system, emphasizing how these principles can be used to design and analyze small, portable LIDAR systems uniquely tailored to guiding and performing remote sensing measurements from autonomous vehicles on the road, in the air, and in the water.
- explain the parameters that determine the size and weight of a LIDAR system.
- identify application-specific requirements that drove the design of state-of-the-art LIDAR systems for use in emerging applications.
- describe the advantages and disadvantages of staring and scanning LIDAR systems.
- estimate the maximum detectable range and the range resolution for a LIDAR instrument.
- distinguish between various LIDAR system designs for use on autonomous vehicles.
- compare advantages and disadvantages of different designs for small, portable LIDAR systems.
- recognize key technologies to watch or work on for achieving your dream miniature LIDAR.