Aug 30, 2022

Tech Tip Tuesdays with Ansys Zemax: Featured Tip August 2022

Category: Product News


This article was originally featured in our Tech Tips Tuesday series on LinkedIn, where we share technical know-how directly from our team of expert optical engineers and the Zemax Community.  

Tech Tip Tuesdays with Zemax: Modeling a Flash Lidar System

Lidar systems have been used in several cases across many industries. In the consumer electronics space, engineers leverage lidar for several functions, such as facial recognition and 3D mapping. While vastly different embodiments of lidar systems exist, a “flash lidar” solution serves to generate an array of detectable points across a target scene with solid-state optical elements. The benefit in obtaining three-dimensional spatial data for use in a small-form package has caused this solid-state lidar system to become more commonplace in consumer electronics products, such as smart phones and tablets.

While there are different types of lidar systems, such as systems with scanning elements that determine the field of view, the Flash Lidar example in our Knowledgebase will explore the use of diffractive optics to replicate the projection of an array of sources across a target scene. An imaging lens system then observes this projected array of sources to obtain time-of-flight information from the incoming rays, thus generating depth information from the projected dots.

In Part 1, we cover the background and characterization of the sequential models for the transmitting and receiving modules for the flash lidar system.

In Part 2, we cover the conversion of our sequential starting points from Part 1 and add in additional detail into the non-sequential model. We also apply the ZOS-API to generate some time-of-flight results with our flash lidar system.

In Part 3, we cover the conversion of our optical model into a .ZBD file using ‘Prepare for OpticsBuilder’. This conversion enables the optical model to be opened in OpticsBuilder for a supported CAD platform to generate mechanical housing and perform ray trace validation. Finally, optical and opto-mechanical engineers can leverage seamless iteration of their designs by sharing .ZBD files between OpticsBuilder and OpticStudio.

Try Ansys Zemax optical design capabilities for yourself, request a free trial today.


Modeling a Flash Lidar System - Part 1

Modeling a Flash Lidar System - Part 2

Modeling a Flash Lidar System - Part 3