Scanning LiDAR systems are a key technology for driver assistance systems. Their range is currently around 200 meters and is to be further extended. In order not to endanger eye safety, a short pulse operation with high peak power is necessary.
Osram OS is developing a pulsed 4-channel SMT laser with 120 watts of peak power per channel. The driver electronics are being developed in cooperation with the power semiconductor manufacturer GaN Systems.
40 A Amplitude Current per Channel
According to the manufacturer, each channel is driven with an amplitude of 40 A and a rise time of only one nanosecond. The high peak power then can be modulated at low-duty cycles to produce high resolution 3D cloud points at long range for new LiDAR designs. The four channels enable the operation of four lasers and thus a larger field of view than is possible with current technology.
Osram OS has apparently already selected a laser diode for the announced system. The company recently added the SPL DS90A_3, an IR diode with three emitters designed for operation with 40 A pulses at 120 W, to its laser range.