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Toposens Launches TS3 Ultrasonic Sensor with “bat vision”

  • By Spencer Freitas
  • News

3D Sonar Sensor for Close Range Perception in Robotics and Autonomous Driving Applications


 

Toposens has announced the release of their current flag-ship ultrasonic product TS3 – a 3D sonar sensor for close range perception in robotics and autonomous driving applications.

The TS3 takes distance measuring to a new level, drawing on the echo location techniques used by bats and dolphins for navigation and orientation in the wild.

In comparison to common ultrasonic sensors, which usually measure the distance only to the closest reflecting surface, Toposens’ new 3D sensors achieve a wide field of view of up to 160° and provide simultaneous 3D measurements for multiple objects within the scanning area.

The new TS3 sensor combines carefully selected hardware components with proprietary signal processing algorithms. It is ideally suited for indoor robotic navigation and object avoidance. Systems benefit from its real-time processing capabilities while keeping data transmission bandwidth and power consumption low, which is especially important for battery powered robots.

Exemplary use cases include home cleaning robots and delivery/service robots as the TS3 sensor enables them to reliably map an environment with minimal processing power and to localize themselves in predefined maps to execute complex path planning algorithms.

TS3 sensors perform independently of ambient light conditions and are even capable of detecting mirroring and transparent surfaces; adding an additional layer of safety where optical sensors tend to fail. For even higher reliability the generated 3D point cloud can easily be fused with data from other system-relevant sensors.

The new TS3 sensor is an embedded sensor system that sends out ultrasound waves in a frequency range inaudible by humans. Microphones record the echoes from all objects in the sensor’s vicinity and computes their location in a three-dimensional space creating a new way of ultrasonic sensing for autonomous systems.

Bat Vision

“Our new “Bat Vision” TS3 sensor is compact, affordable and integration-ready,” explains Tobias Bahnemann, managing director of Toposens.

“Therefore, engineers can easily add it to their sensor stacks to replace or complement their existing optical sensing systems, providing both redundancy and an improved level of accuracy compared to standard ultrasonic sensors in various autonomous navigation applications.”

The core technology is based on the Toposens’ SoundVision1TM chip making the sensor system easily adaptable to a variety of product designs. The TS3 is suited for developing next-level mass market vehicles in robotic and even automotive use cases like automated parking and next-level ADAS functionality.

Technical specifications include a detection range of up to five meters and a scan rate of approximately 28 Hz. The TS3 returns up to 200 points per second with each 3D point corresponding to the cartesian coordinates and an additional volume measurement of the ultrasound wave’s echo returned by an object’s surface.

TS3 is now available at https://shop.toposens.com/.

More information about this sensor can be found at https://toposens.com/ts3.

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