Near-Range Miniature Nova Lidar Sensor can Detect Objects up to 30 Meters Providing Extra Safety in Next-Generation Autonomous Vehicles

Published  January 18, 2021   0
Cepton's Smallest Wide-FOV Miniature Nova Lidar Sensor

Showcased at CES 2021, the all-new miniature near-range Lidar sensor, Nova from Cepton Technologies is designed to provide extra safety in next-generation advanced driver assistant systems (ADAS), autonomous vehicles (AVs), and autonomous ground vehicles (AGVs). This new sensor addresses major gaps in proximity detection of objects with current sensor technologies in high volume automotive applications.

The ultra-small Nova Lidar Sensor measures mere 3.5 cm (W) x 3.5 cm (H) x 7.5 cm (D) and weighing less than 350 g and can be easily embedded all around a vehicle to provide a complete 360° view of its immediate surroundings. Nova is ideally suited for accurate detection of objects in proximity, such as small children, on-road objects, road edges, stationary objects, and more.

The device has an angular resolution of up to 0.3°, with a maximum range of up to 30 m. This affordable compact wide-angle near-range sensor is powered by Micro Motion Technology (MMT) and offers high-resolution 3D imaging with a high field of view (FOV) of 90-120° (H) and 60-90° (V). It’s a minimally-designed sensor with automotive-grade reliability, low power (<3.5 W), high performance and requires only small amounts of real estate in the vehicle body. Moreover, its modular design and easily accessible components make it highly manufacturable that too at a very low cost in high volumes.

Dr. Jun Pei, CEO of the company said, “Currently, consumer vehicles have been limited to technologies that cannot facilitate true Level 3 or Level 4 autonomy for the mass market. Radars, cameras, and ultrasonic sensors suffer from high false positives and false negatives. Rotational lidars are not embeddable, making them impractical for consumer vehicles. Near-range flash lidars either lack a wide field of view or cannot match the power and size requirements to be discretely hidden all around the vehicle. The Nova represents path-breaking lidar innovation for the automotive industry in that it achieves a level of performance that is unmatched for such a small form factor.”

Key Features of Nova Lidar Sensor

  • Frictionless, mirrorless, non-rotational MMT-based modular design
  • <$100 at automotive volumes
  • Up to 30 m at 10% and 0.3° angular resolution
  • Up to 120° HFOV and up to 90° VFOV
  • Miniature, light and embeddable - 3.5(W) x 3.5 (H) x 7.5 (D) cm, <0.35 kg
  • Automotive-grade reliability, ISO-26262 ASIL-B

The high volume production of the Nova sensor will begin in 2023. Due to the anticipated high demand for samples, it will only be available to selected customers in 2021 through Cepton’s Early Access Program.