Unmanned vehicles guided across desert with help of SICK sensors

MARCH 11--SICK (Minneapolis, MN; www.sickusa.com), a developer of factory-automation solutions, announced that its Laser Measurement System (LMS) sensors are being used by several teams during the DARPA Grand Challenge.

Mar 11th, 2004

MARCH 11--SICK (Minneapolis, MN; www.sickusa.com), a developer of factory-automation solutions, announced that its Laser Measurement System (LMS) sensors are being used by several teams during the DARPA Grand Challenge. The LMS sensor is one of the key components of the navigation system, helping to sense the terrain and obstacles in front of the unmanned vehicles.

Sponsored by the US Department of Defense, the competition is designed to test state-of-the-art autonomous vehicle technology. The race, slated for March 13, 2004, will cover a rugged course between Barstow, CA, and Primm, NV. The team that completes the course the fastest, and within a specified time, will win $1 million.

"The LMS units play a key role in our terrain-sensing capabilities," commented Chris Pederson, team leader for the A.I. Motorvators team. "The reliability and quality are impressive and demonstrate SICK's commitment to producing components that have the performance and durability needed for autonomous ground vehicles."

"The SICK LMS sensors are considered key to our ability to generate a simplified 3-D image of the immediate terrain in front of the vehicle," added Ivar Schoenmeyr, leader of the CyberRyder team.

SICK noncontact LMS sensors offer accurate distance measurement and collision control throughout a scanning field up to 180°. The LMS sensors can also monitor open spaces for building security, object classification, determining the volume of objects, and collision prevention for vehicles and cranes.

The North American subsidiary of SICK was established in 1976. The company has sales offices throughout the USA and Canada and has more than 350 patents in industrial sensors, safety systems, and automatic identification solutions. The diversity of its product line allows SICK to offer solutions at every phase of production in the automotive, packaging, electronics, food and beverage, and material-handling markets. SICK was founded in 1946 and has operations or representation in 65 countries worldwide.

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