Lidar companies team for drone-based mapping and analytics

Silicon Valley-based lidar solutions company Cepton is working with LidarSwiss Solutions to deploy its technology in a drone-based mapping and analytics solution for infrastructure management and engineering design applications.

LidarSwiss is a provider of high-performance unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) based lidar solutions, based in Switzerland. Utilising Cepton’s Sora lidar sensor, its Nano P60 system provides high-fidelity mapping and real-time processing on the fly to serve engineers, forestry managers and urban planners across the globe.

Sensor and camera systems

To date, Nano P60 has been used to map and analyse powerlines, areas for site development, flood plains and highways in over twenty cities in Asia, Europe and Australia.

Nano P60 integrates Cepton’s Sora sensor with a high-precision IMU/GNSS unit and high-resolution camera system. Its intelligent controller with LidarSwiss proprietary software automatically combines all raw data to generate high-density, high-precision RGB attributed 3D laser point clouds during flight.

With a total weight of 2.1kg, the system can be mounted on small drones to produce mapping products such as digital orthophotos, digital elevation models and 3D models, or to interface with a third-party software to enable easy, seamless solutions for all kinds of industry applications in areas such as smart cities, digital twins and building information modelling.

“The prominent features of the Nano P60 are its high stability, point density and intelligence,” said Robert Kletzli, founder and CTO of LidarSwiss.

“This lidar-enabled system addresses the critical gap of 3D accuracy with traditional camera and stereo imaging technologies. Now, instead of needing two images to see a single point and detect its elevation, Nano P60 utilises lidar’s intrinsic 3D imaging capabilities to achieve maximised efficiency, making real-time processing and analytics possible.

“Cepton’s Sora lidar is among the most compact, lightweight lidar sensors that we have tested. Its unique lidar architecture allows seamless integration, making Nano P60 a true plug-and-play system with solid-state reliability.”

“We are proud to be supporting LidarSwiss and its customers with our lidar technology to unlock applications such as 3D modelling for BIM, historical site mapping, terrain modelling for heavy vegetation areas, volumetric calculations for mining, power line inspection and forestry mapping.”