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Proceedings Paper

Active laser radar (lidar) for measurement of corresponding height and reflectance images
Author(s): Christoph Froehlich; M. Mettenleiter; F. Haertl
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Paper Abstract

For the survey and inspection of environmental objects, a non-tactile, robust and precise imaging of height and depth 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 3D height and 2D reflectance images. The laser radar is an optical-wavelength system, and is comparable to devices built by ERIM, Odetics, and Perceptron, measuring the range between sensor and target surfaces as well as the reflectance of the target surface, which corresponds to the magnitude of the back scattered laser energy. In contrast to these range sensing devices, the laser radar under consideration is designed for high speed and precise operation in both indoor and outdoor environments, emitting a minimum of near-IR laser energy. It integrates a laser range measurement system and a mechanical deflection system for 3D environmental measurements. This paper reports on design details of the laser radar for surface inspection tasks. It outlines the performance requirements and introduces the measurement principle. The hardware design, including the main modules, such as the laser head, the high frequency unit, the laser beam deflection system, and the digital signal processing unit are discussed.the signal processing unit consists of dedicated signal processors for real-time sensor data preprocessing as well as a sensor computer for high-level image analysis and feature extraction. The paper focuses on performance data of the system, including noise, drift over time, precision, and accuracy with measurements. It discuses 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 buildings, monuments and industrial environments are presented. The paper concludes by summarizing results achieved in industrial environments and gives a short outlook to future work.

Paper Details

Date Published: 19 August 1997
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 3101, New Image Processing Techniques and Applications: Algorithms, Methods, and Components II, (19 August 1997); doi: 10.1117/12.281297
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. 3101:
New Image Processing Techniques and Applications: Algorithms, Methods, and Components II
Philippe Refregier; Rolf-Juergen Ahlers, Editor(s)

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