LiDAR and Power Management Solutions for Automation Equipment

In recent years, in automation applications such as sweeping robots, unmanned guided vehicles (AGVs), and autonomous vehicles, more and more devices use LiDAR (LiDAR), which can accurately measure distances and identify spaces. The stable operation of automation equipment plays an important role. This article will introduce the development of LiDAR and power conversion devices, as well as the functions and features of the laser diode and power conversion device solutions launched by ROHM (ROHM semiconductor).

In recent years, in automation applications such as sweeping robots, unmanned guided vehicles (AGVs), and autonomous vehicles, more and more devices use LiDAR (LiDAR), which can accurately measure distances and identify spaces. The stable operation of automation equipment plays an important role. This article will introduce the development of LiDAR and power conversion devices, as well as the functions and features of the laser diode and power conversion device solutions launched by ROHM (ROHM Semiconductor).

AI technology improves LiDAR’s ability to identify objects

In recent years, edge AI technology based on deep learning (convolutional network) using point cloud data measured by LiDAR and object detection algorithms (YOLO/Faster-RCNN/SSD, etc.) is developing rapidly year by year. The innovation of combining 3D imaging technology and deep learning has also become the core technology of artificial intelligence robots. As LiDAR technology matures and costs decrease year by year, LiDAR has been widely used in many robot and automotive applications to accurately measure distances and identify objects in space.

The camera and LiDAR supported by AI and machine learning technology have significantly better sensing performance than the computer vision technology of traditional cameras. The algorithm can automatically adapt to various lighting and weather conditions, and can detect road conditions more accurately, flexibly and stably. Measure, track and classify to distinguish cyclists, drivers and pedestrians on and around the road. Therefore, in order to detect information farther, more accurately, and with lower power consumption, there are also higher requirements for the performance of laser diodes as light sources.

LiDAR and Power Management Solutions for Automation Equipment

Provides higher quality high output power laser diodes

In LiDAR and object detection technology, a light source that outputs a high-definition beam is crucial to achieve accurate object localization, classification, and segmentation. ROHM laser diodes achieve high-quality beam shapes through optical waveguide design and process technologies accumulated over the years, which can contribute to the development of artificial intelligence and robotics, which will require increasingly complex operations in the future.

ROHM has its own patented technology that can achieve a narrower luminous amplitude, which helps LiDAR support longer distances and ensure higher accuracy. ROHM’s 25W high-output laser diode, the RLD90QZW5, has been mass-produced since 2019, and has been well received in applications mainly in the consumer electronics field, and its introduction has achieved outstanding results. This time, in order to expand the application to the field of industrial control equipment, which is gradually growing in the market, ROHM has developed a 75W high-output laser diode, the RLD90QZW3.

The RLD90QZW3 uses a 905nm, 75W, 225μm invisible pulsed laser diode to achieve a narrow emission width, which helps to extend the detection distance and improve the sensing accuracy. Using ROHM’s advanced structure, the RLD90QZW3 has high energy conversion efficiency and can reduce temperature fluctuations in wavelengths, contributing to low power consumption and long life. RLD90QZW3 adopts industry standard Φ5.6 CAN package, suitable for laser rangefinder, unmanned truck and security monitoring.

RLD90QZW3 is an infrared 75W high output power laser diode developed for LiDAR using 3D ToF system for ranging and spatial recognition. With ROHM’s exclusive component research and development technology, among the laser diodes with the same level of output power in the industry, the ultra-narrow luminous amplitude of 225μm has been achieved. Compared with the 290μm market competition, the luminous amplitude has been reduced by 22%, so it has high beam performance, narrow Emission area and high optical density for higher resolution and longer range.

In addition, in addition to successfully making the luminous intensity more uniform in the entire luminous amplitude range, the temperature dependence of the laser wavelength is as low as 0.15nm/°C, and it is not easily affected by temperature changes, so its performance can be stably exhibited, and the same output power, luminous Compared with the market competitors with an amplitude of 290μm and a temperature dependence of 0.25nm/℃, the temperature dependence of the laser wavelength can also be reduced by 40%, and the use of a smaller wavelength bandpass filter can provide a narrower wavelength range, thereby improving the signal-to-noise ratio, so it can support LiDAR long-range applications. On the other hand, the RLD90QZW3 has a uniform light intensity across the entire emission width, which improves resolution at the edges of the image.

In addition, RLD90QZW3 adopts patented technology. Among products with the same output power, it not only has the narrowest luminous amplitude in the industry, but also achieves the same photoelectric conversion efficiency (PCE) as the luminous amplitude, which is difficult to match with the market competitors. 21% (forward current 24A, 75W output). Therefore, there is no need to worry about increased power consumption when using it.

In order to speed up the market introduction of this series of products, the ROHM official website also provides a wealth of design data for evaluating the introduction of this series of new products free of charge, including application guidelines for driving circuit design methods, data and simulation for circuit board development Use models (SPICE models, Ray data), etc.

To provide solutions in the future, ROHM is prototyping a reference design for LiDAR sensors and has also started commercializing its next-generation device GaN HEMT and higher output power 120W laser diode RLD90QZW8, this reference design will help customers Reduce design man-hours and support fast time-to-market.

LiDAR and Power Management Solutions for Automation Equipment

ROHM’s LiDAR Sensor ⒖Pod O

LiDAR and Power Management Solutions for Automation Equipment

Power conversion efficiency improves robot performance

China, known as the “world’s factory”, already has a very high level of industrial production and manufacturing technology. The high-level machine tools/robots in various industrial fields are also 10 designated by the Chinese government for the “Made in China 2025” project. one of the fields. China’s goal is to perfect the processes and components used in China’s manufacturing by 2025, making China a world leader in robotics. Therefore, many robot companies have been born in China.

Robotic applications require more power due to higher functions such as artificial intelligence, sensing (image recognition), and enhanced drive capabilities. Therefore, the technical problem of power conversion to be solved is getting bigger and bigger. In addition, power conversion efficiency is also a very important factor for mobile robots.

Innovations in power conversion technology are driving changes in robot design, and current new power devices are meeting the size, weight, power budget, and cost-efficiency needs of robot applications, thereby bringing robots from factories to home and commercial applications, further expanding the market’s potential. Expansion capacity.

LiDAR and Power Management Solutions for Automation Equipment

Advanced Power Converters for Industrial Equipment Applications

In order to solve the power supply problem for industrial equipment, ROHM has launched a DC/DC converter BD9G500EFJ-LA for industrial equipment. This device supports 48V power supply widely used in industrial robots. Currently, 24-72V power supply is the mainstream of battery-powered mobile robots. BD9G500EFJ-LA provides industry-leading highest performance 80V high withstand voltage 5A high current, which contributes to higher functions and smaller size of advanced industrial equipment, miniaturization of equipment integrating multiple functions, and the combination of artificial intelligence and / Or the Internet of Things, to pursue more functional industrial applications.

BD9G500EFJ-LA can be widely used in electric bicycles, industrial robots, power tools and other applications that require 48V/60V power input, as well as servers, charging stations and power amplifiers for 5G base stations that require 48V power input. In addition, household appliances such as vacuum cleaners, washing machines, and other applications where motors are exposed to large surge voltages will also be important application areas for the BD9G500EFJ-LA.

BD9G500EFJ-LA can increase the output current, expand the operating temperature range, and improve the output voltage accuracy. ROHM also provides a 10-year supply guarantee, which meets ROHM’s high-quality design standards and is also a product that meets the LA level.

The BD9G500EFJ-LA adopts the high-voltage Bi-CDMOS process to achieve a best-in-class 80V withstand voltage and a wide safe operating range in a non-isolated DC/DC converter chip with a high-side MOSFET (asynchronous rectification type). Compared with standard products with the same output current, the chip has successfully increased the withstand voltage by about 20%, which not only provides sufficient burst surge voltage margin for the 48V main power supply of 5G base stations and servers, but also provides a common The 60V system provides sufficient margin so that in e-bikes and power tools, larger battery sizes can be used, improving application reliability.

At the same time, BD9G500EFJ-LA has built-in low on-resistance, with high-speed transient response performance, phase compensation can be easily set, and the frequency can be adjusted between 100kHz and 650kHz. The built-in low-loss MOSFET achieves a high power conversion efficiency of 85% over a wide output current range of 2A to 5A (despite asynchronous rectification), which translates into higher power saving performance. ROHM also offers the BD9G500EFJ-EVK-001 evaluation board for evaluating the BD9G500EFJ-LA device.

Epilogue

The new LiDAR and power conversion chips, with high quality and performance, will help improve the performance of industrial equipment such as robots, and promote robot applications to the home and commercial fields. The high-quality laser diodes launched by ROHM have higher precision and detection distance, and the new power conversion chip can also provide higher power conversion efficiency, which will be a better partner for robots and automation equipment.

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