Geo Week News

January 3, 2017

The AL-500 Lidar is Small Enough for Fixed Installation, Comes with an API


California-based Acuity Technologies has announced the release of the AL-500 omnidirectional lidar. The AL-500 is an effort to push beyond the industrial and defense spaces where the company has operated since 1993 and into the rapidly expanding automotive and commercial capture markets.

First, details: The system measures in at 83 mm by 312 mm by 133mm and 4.3 kg. It boasts IP67 sealing and a battery life good for 8 hours of continuous operation, so you can install it in locations without easy access to power.

Acuity says the scanner is also noteworthy for its ability to capture monochrome images simultaneously with range data. “Since the scene brightness is captured point by point along with distance,” they explain, “no registration of the image is required and no mismatch occurs in dynamic scenes or mobile applications.”

As for specs, the lidar captures 800,000 points per second at a range of 300 meters, with 1 mm resolution. The flexible system allows capture at a number of different point densities—up to 6667 by 40,000 points equally spaced through a 120° by 360° field of view.

The LS-500 captures 360 vertical lines per second at ten full rotations a second. The highest scanning speed can capture 10 million points in 25 seconds.

It comes in configurations tweaked for a number of different uses, including fixed-position, terrestrial, and mobile and airborne work.

Acuity includes its own PointWorks software interface for scan collection and visualization, but that’s not all. In a forward-looking move, the company also offers an API (application programming interface) and source code for their software and hardware.

This means users can develop scanning software with full control over the configuration of the AL-500. Acuity says users can tweak features such as buffered sequential scanning, real-time calibration, variable short-range particle rejection, and, of course, scan speeds and density.

No word yet on price or availability.

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