Compressed Sensing supported LiDAR with coherent detection at eye-safe wavelengths for autonomous driving

Supported by the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft

Duration: March 2020 – March 2023

LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) is investigated by the automotive industry as a critical and important step of the further development of driver assistance systems. Challenges of future LiDAR sensors include higher resolution over longer distances and robustness against interference in bright sunlight or fog.

The goal of the collaborative project MELINDA, which includes three Fraunhofer Institutes (HHI, ISIT, FHR) is to demonstrate a LiDAR system based on coherent detection. This system enables long-range operation, simple implementation of glare suppression and potentially a small form factor. It is based on the modulation of an eye-safe laser at a wavelength of 1550 nm that scans the scene using small MEMS mirrors. In addition, compressed sensing is used as a novel signal processing technique to achieve a higher efficiency of hardware usage and computing.