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DENSO collaborates with Aeva to advance FMCW 4D lidar

DENSO will partner with LiDAR and perception systems company Aeva to develop next-generation sensing and perception systems. Together, the companies will advance Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave (FMCW) lidar (earlier post), a solution that measures velocity, in addition to depth and reflectivity, and bring it to the mass vehicle market.

Lidar plays a key role in automated driving and advanced driver-assistance systems. At present, most lidar systems use the Time of Flight (TOF) method to operate. This method accurately detects the distance and direction of objects by emitting pulse laser beams and measuring the time taken to receive the beams reflected by the objects. It can detect the positions of objects around a vehicle with high resolution, and is expected to provide high-performance detection.

Founded in 2017 by former Apple engineers Soroush Salehian and Mina Rezk, Aeva is developing lidar with a new measurement method called FMCW. Unlike the TOF lidar, FMCW lidar detects not only the distance and direction of objects but also measures the moving speed of objects by emitting laser beams while measuring the changes in frequency of the beams reflected by objects.

These capabilities allow FMCW lidar to detect moving objects close to a vehicle, such as pedestrians and bicycles, with higher accuracy and speed. As the collaboration progresses, DENSO’s deep knowledge of sensing technology and commercialization paired with Aeva’s proprietary technology will allow each to further strengthen FMCW lidar and innovate perception systems for the future.

The partnership also supports DENSO’s goal to eliminate traffic accidents and realize freedom of mobility for all. To do this, the company is focusing on developing technologies that improve road safety, such as advanced driver-assistance and automated driving systems; working with public and private partners to promote traffic accident prevention; and innovating solutions that help detect driver health and measure driving skills.


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