Mitsubishi Electric has developed a lidar product using a micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) mirror with an extra-wide scanning angle.
The lidar product for autonomous vehicles irradiates objects by laser and uses a dual-axis MEMS mirror to scan for the reflected light, generating three-dimensional images of vehicles and pedestrians.
The MEMS mirror measures 7 x 5mm and has a lightweight design that is able to scan horizontally and vertically.
It has 15° of horizontal movement and 3.4° vertically, with Mitsubishi Electric aiming to increase this to 6° by improving the beam structure.
The MEMS mirror can be produced in large numbers on a silicon substrate using semi-conductor processing technology and uses fewer parts compared with mirrors driven mechanically by motors.
Mitsubishi has optimized the arrangement of the MEMS mirror and optical components to suppress vignetting and avoid the laser beam being distorted by the lidar’s internal components.
The design and optical transmission mechanism achieve an extra-wide horizontal scanning angle, enhancing the scanning of vehicles ahead, oncoming vehicles, pedestrians, traffic lights, traffic signs and roadside obstacles.
Mitsubishi aims to achieve a vertical scanning angle exceeding 25°, so that vehicles and pedestrians can be detected in close proximity.