Recently, development of vehicular LiDAR systems have taken off. These are systems for adaptive cruise control, whereby the system identifies the distance of the vehicle in front and applies the breaks to slow or stop the vehicle automatically. Taking this idea forward, more recently LIDAR’s have been used in driver-less cars. Whereby the systems produce autonomous vehicles that can perform complex maneuvers and drive in public with little or no input from a user.
Knight Optical also offers BK7, an optical glass for use in the range from visible up to the near infrared. This makes the glass suitable as protective window for Wind LiDAR systems that operate at 1500–1560 nm. The BK7 can offer an uncoated average transmission of 92% between 300 nm and 2000 nm.
Additionally, the BK7 is a cost-effective precision glass and is part of the borosilicate family.
- Stock sizes from 5 mm to 75 mm diameter; between 1.5 mm–8 mm thick.
- Custom shapes and sizes available to quotation.
- Edging down to smaller diameters, square and rectangular apertures.
LiDAR systems are used in monitoring wind speeds and directions on proposed and existing wind farm sites. This leads to wind farm optimizations through resulting increases in energy outputs. This gain in performance is achieved from the LiDAR system, which is mounted to the nacelle of wind turbines automating the adjustment of blades to increase energy generations. The adjustments to the blades are due to the Doppler LiDAR system measuring the frequency shift of the backscattered light and thus calculating the wind velocity.
Airborne LiDAR systems are also used in surveying and for topographical measurements. Using the LiDAR system, a Digital Terrain Model (DTM) or Digital Elevation Model (DEM) can be produced. These are typically 3D representations of a terrain’s surface. The system is typically integrated into a plane, which would then pulse a laser signal onto the terrain and dependent on the elevation of the surface. This would influence how long the pulse would return to the detector. These airborne systems typically have protective windows which Knight Optical can provide with hydrophobic coatings and an AR topcoat, which allows for maximum signal return without the worry of pollution or condensation in the atmosphere.
LiDAR systems have also been the bane for many motorists where this technology has been utilized in traffic speed law enforcement. These systems are used as traffic speed law enforcement camera systems, which can be found on motorways and major highways globally. Additionally they can be miniaturized into handheld systems that can accurately monitor the speed of single passing cars. These LiDAR systems are often integrated in conjunction with automatic number plate reading (ANPR) systems, which allows for a traffic enforcement person to quickly determine the offending vehicle and to automate the ticketing enforcement process.
A typical spec for n-BK7 or equivalent Windows
- Material: N-BK7 or equivalent
- Diameter Tolerance: +0.0/-0.15 mm
- Length/Width Tolerance: +/- 0.10mm
- Thickness Tolerance: +/-0.10mm
- Transmission: Tavg=92% dependant on substrate thickness.