Onion Tau is an affordable 3D depth LiDAR camera (Crowdfunding)

Onion Tau

Onion is better known for its Omega IoT boards running OpenWrt, but the company has now come up with a completely different product: Onion Tau 3D depth camera equipped with a 160×60 LiDAR sensor. The device plugs like a USB webcam to a host computer or board, but instead of transferring standard images, the camera produces 3D depth data that can be used to detect thin objects, track moving objects, and be integrated into other applications leveraging environment mapping such as SLAM (Simultaneous localization and mapping). Onion Tau LiDAR camera (TA-L10) specifications: Depth technology – LiDAR Time of Flight Depth stream output – 160 x 60 @ 30 fps Depth range – 0.1 to 4.5 meters Depth field of view (FOV) – 81˚ x 30° Grayscale 2D camera image sent with 3D depth map data Host interface – USB Type-C port Dimensions – 90 x 41 x 20 mm; 4x M3 mounting holes The data from Onion Tau camera can […]

$200 Omega2 WiFi LIDAR Kit Comes with a 360˚ 2D LIDAR Scanner

Omega2 Wireless LiDAR kit

Onion Omega2 is a tiny WiFi board running OpenWrt that launched for as low as $5 via a crowdfunding campaign around 2 years ago, and at the time I reviewed Onion Omega2+ board – which comes with more memory and storage – together with its dock, and I found it was fairly easy to get started with the solution. You can now buy the board for a little over $10, but the company also offers kits, and their latest product is Omega2 wireless LIDAR kit with an indoor 360˚ 2D LiDAR scanner that uses rotating laser ranging to measure and map exact distances to indoor surroundings. The kit is comprised of the following items: Onion Omega2+ board with MediaTek MT7688 MIPS processor, 128MB RAM, 32MB flash Power Dock 2 with 30-pin expansion header and USB host port Delta2B 360˚ LiDAR Scanner Up to 5000 samples/second Range – 0.2 to 8 meters Scan Rate – 4 ~ 10 Rotation/Sec Laser – […]

Getting Started with TinyLIDAR Time-of-Flight Sensor on Arduino and Raspberry Pi

TinyLIDAR is an inexpensive and compact board based on STMicro VL53L0X Time-of-Flight (ToF) ranging sensor that allows you to measure distance up to 2 meters using infrared signals, and with up to 60 Hz. Contrary to most other VL53L0X boards, it also includes an STM32L0 micro-controller that takes care of most of the processing, frees up resource on your host board (e.g. Arduino UNO), and should be easier to control thanks to I2C commands. The project was successfully funded on Indiegogo by close to 600 backers, and the company contacted me to provided a sample of the board, which I have now received, and tested with Arduino (Leonardo), and Raspberry Pi (2). TinyLIDAR Unboxing I was expecting a single board, but instead I received a bubble envelop with five small zipped packages. Opening them up  revealed three TinyLIDAR boards, the corresponding Grove to jumper cables, and a bracket PCB for three TinyLIDAR boards together with headers and screws. So I […]

NVIDIA DRIVE PX Pegasus Platform is Designed for Fully Autonomous Vehicles

Many companies are now involved in the quest to develop self-driving cars, and getting there step by step with 6 levels of autonomous driving defined based on info from  Wikipedia: Level 0 – Automated system issues warnings but has no vehicle control. Level 1 (”hands on”) – Driver and automated system shares control over the vehicle. Examples include Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Parking Assistance, and Lane Keeping Assistance (LKA) Type II. Level 2 (”hands off”) – The automated system takes full control of the vehicle (accelerating, braking, and steering), but the driver is still expected to monitor the driving, and be prepared to immediately intervene at any time. You’ll actually have your hands on the steering wheel, just in case… Level 3 (”eyes off”) – The driver can safely turn their attention away from the driving tasks, e.g. the driver can text or watch a movie. The system may ask the driver to take over in some situations specified by […]

CrazyPi Board Runs Ubuntu and ROS on Rockchip RK3128 SoC for Robotics & IoT Projects (Crowdfunding)

CrazyPi is a maker board powered by Rockchip RK3128 quad core Cortex A7 processor that can take various magnetically connected modules such as LIDAR, gimbal, 4G LTE, etc.., and runs both Ubuntu and ROS (Robot Operating System) for DIY robotics & IoT projects. CrazyPi main board specifications: SoC – Rockchip RK3128 quad core Cortex A7 processor @ 1.2 GHz with ARM Mali GPU MCU – ARM Cortex-M3 @ 72 MHz System Memory – 1GB DDR3L @ 1066 MHz Storage – 16GB eMMC flash pre-loaded with Ubuntu and ROS Connectivity – 802.11 a/b/g/n WiFi @ 150 Mbps, Bluetooth 4.0 USB – 1x USB 2.0 host port Expansion Headers – Two headers with a total of 36-pin exposing 1x HDMI, 1x speaker, 1x microphone, 3x PWM, 1x I2C, 1x UART, 1x SPDIF, 1x SPI, 1x USB Power Supply – 5V via micro USB port ? Dimensions – Smaller than credit card The full details are not available yet, but the company claims […]

TinyLIDAR is a $15 LIDAR MCU Board based on STMicro VL53L0X Time-of-Flight Ranging Sensor (Crowdfunding)

LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) technology is used in autonomous car, drones, and some smartphones, in order to get an object position just like RADAR systems, but instead of using radio frequencies, it relies on infrared signals. High speed, long range LIDAR systems can cost several hundred dollars, but if you’d like to experiment with the technology, or your project would work just fine with 60 Hz scanning and a 2 meter range, tinyLIDAR could be a fun board to play with using Arduino compatible boards. TinyLIDAR specifications and features: LIDAR Sensor ST VL53L0X Time-of-Flight (ToF) ranging sensor 940nm laser VCSEL Up to 2 meters range Up to 60 Hz sampling rate even with Arduino UNO board Up to 3% accuracy with mm precision MCU – Unnamed dedicated 32-bit MCU (likely STM32) used to abstract the ST PAL API into simple I2C commands Host Interface – 4-pin I2C header; re-configurable I2C address and operation modes Misc – Blue LED, low […]