An Interference-Tolerant Integrated LIDAR system
LIDAR – essentially laser radar – is a key technology in the emerging field of autonomous vehicles. It allows the vehicle to detect any obstacles around it and calculate its distance from them, which allows it to build a real-time map of its surroundings. Issues arise, however, when multiple LIDAR-equipped vehicles are on the road at the same time, as their transmitted lasers may strike other vehicles' receivers. This interference gives the receiving car a faulty view of its surroundings, which could be dangerous if the LIDAR is being used to help control the car. Our research team found a way to mitigate this issue, using a pseudo-random algorithm to vary the time at which the lasers are sent. This spreads the laser energy around and makes it less likely to create a faulty detection in any cars that may accidentally receive it. My work on this project was to create a software model of this algorithm to assist with the creation of this hardware, and then to test the functionality of this system in hardware using an actual laser system. To do this, I created and optimized a program in MATLAB for the software portion. Once that software portion was completed and tested to be accurate, a Verilog script was written so that tests could be conducted with actual laser drivers on FPGA boards.
Knox, Derrick B (2018). An Interference-Tolerant Integrated LIDAR system. Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Available electronically from