Velodyne’s lidar system harnessed by autonomous mower firm

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Velodyne Lidar has secured a multi-year agreement to provide its Puck sensors to Renu Robotics, developer of autonomous all-electric mowers.

According to Velodyne, Puck lidar sensors provide rich 3D computer perception data that allows real-time localisation, mapping, object detection, classification and tracking to support safe navigation and reliable operation.

The Puck is a small, compact lidar sensor that delivers 100-metre range. Its reliability, power-efficiency and surround view make it an ideal solution for affordable low speed autonomy applications, according to Velodyne.

Renu’s robotic mowers will now be equipped with Puck lidar sensors for safe, efficient, high-precision navigation and to avoid obstacles when conducting utility-scale vegetation management.

Renubot, designed for solar and energy facilities, uses the lidar to navigate sites, along with real-time kinematic (RTK) GPS correction which enables vehicle positional accuracy within 2cm.

“With its sophisticated, sustainable-to-operate autonomous mower, Renu Robotics is revolutionising the way solar and energy companies conduct vegetation management,” said Laura Wrisley, VP of North America sales at Velodyne Lidar.

“The innovative Renubot demonstrates how Puck sensors power precision and safety in autonomous vehicles, operating without human intervention. Renu Robotics is a prime example of Velodyne delivering on its mission to improve safety and sustainability in communities worldwide.”

Additionally, Renubot leverages AI and machine learning for autonomous command and control, and to learn and assess the topography as it conducts highly precise mowing and grooming of facility grounds.

“Velodyne’s Puck sensors provide an essential ingredient for our robotic autonomy and navigation,” said Michael Blanton, Renu’s chief technical officer.

“The power-efficient sensors enable the Renubot to deliver an automated vegetation management system that is repetitive and reliable to keep facilities operating at peak performance, while controlling costs.”

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