LiDAR, radar, and cameras: Measuring distance with light in the automotive industry

Slawomir Piatek, Ph.D., Hamamatsu Corporation & New Jersey Institute of Technology
December 6, 2016

About this webinar

Whether it is a safety feature or a fully autonomous vehicle, information about the distance to other vehicles on the road, unexpected road obstacles, or permanent structures near the road is of paramount importance. This webinar discusses methods of measuring distance with light (emphasizing Time of Flight LiDAR) that either are or have the potential to be employed by the industry.


The presentation focuses on technical aspects of:

  • Time of flight (ToF) light detection and ranging (LiDAR) and radar
    • Physics concept
    • Why we need LiDAR
    • Design challenges: Wavelength, light source, photodetector detector, and beam steering
    • Types of ToF LiDAR: Mechanical, flash, optical phase array, and more
  • Frequency modulated continuous wave (FMCW) radar
    • Physics concept
    • Comparison with ToF radar
    • Optical mixing
    • Amplitude chirp-modulation with electrical mixing
    • Phase comparison LiDAR
    • Stereovision: Active and passive triangulation

Slawomir Piatek, Ph.D., is a senior university lecturer of physics at New Jersey Institute of Technology. In his role as scientific consultant at Hamamatsu Corporation, he has developed a photonics training program for engineers and is involved in popularizing SiPM as a novel photodetector by writing and lecturing about the device.