Velodyne announces new VLS-128 LiDAR sensor for the rapidly expanding autonomous vehicle market

Velodyne LiDAR has announced its new VLS-128 LiDAR sensor for the rapidly expanding autonomous vehicle market. Featuring 128 laser channels, the VLS-128 is an extreme step forward in LiDAR vision systems, featuring the trifecta of highest resolution, longest range, and the widest surround field-of-view of any LiDAR system available today, has claimed the company.

Comparison of the VLS-128 point cloud (top) to the HDL-64 point cloud (bottom)

Velodyne’s VLS-128 succeeds the HDL-64, still considered to be the industry benchmark for high resolution. Velodyne’s new flagship model has a 10 times higher resolving power than the HDL-64, allowing it to see objects more clearly, while its object identification and detection system can provide superior collision avoidance in a moving car. The benefits of VLS-128 over other LiDars available are listed below:

  • The VLS-128’s high-resolution data can also be used directly for object detection without additional sensor fusion, which improves the safety and redundancy of the autonomous vehicle’s compute function and reduces overall compute complexity.
  • With its long range and high-resolution data, the VLS-128 allows autonomous vehicles to function equally as well in highway scenarios and low-speed urban environments. It is designed to solve for all corner cases needed for full autonomy in highway scenarios, allowing for expanded functionality and increased testing in new environments.
  • Based on mass-produced semiconductor technologies, the VLS-128 is designed for automated assembly in Velodyne’s Megafactory using a proprietary laser alignment and manufacturing system to meet the growing global demand for LiDAR-based vision systems.

Velodyne has performed customer demonstrations of the VLS-128 and plans to produce it in scale at the company’s new Megafactory in San Jose.

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