Sense Photonics brings its fancy new flash lidar to market

There’s no shortage of lidar solutions available for autonomous vehicles, drones, and robots — theoretically, anyway. But getting a lidar unit from theory to mass production might be harder than coming up with the theory in the first place. Sense Photonics appears to have made it past that part of the journey, and is now offering its advanced flash lidar for pre-order.

Lidar comes in a variety of form factors, but the spinning type we’ve seen so much of is on its way out and more compact, reliable planar types are on the way in; Luminar is making moves to get ahead, but Sense Photonics isn’t sitting still — and anyway, the two companies have different strengths.

While Luminar and some other companies aim to create a forward-facing lidar that can detect shapes hundreds of feet ahead in a relatively narrow field of view, Sense is going after the short-range, wide-angle side of things. And because they sync up with regular cameras, it’s easy as pie to map depth onto the RGB image:

Sense Photonics makes it easy to match traditional camera views with depth data.

These are lidars that you’d want mounted on the rear or sides of

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