Patents Examined by Luke D. Ratcliffe
  • Patent number: 10466360
    Abstract: A depth measurement assembly (DMA) measures depth information of an object in a local area. The DMA includes structured light projector, a depth camera assembly, and a controller. The structured light projector projects structured light patterns into the local area. The structured light projector includes a diffractive optical unit that includes diffractive optical elements (DOEs) and selects a DOE. The selected DOE is illuminated by light from a light source and converts the light into a structured light pattern. In some embodiment, the diffractive optical units selects multiple DOEs associated with multiple structured light patterns. The structured light pattern is projected into the local area by a projection assembly of the structured light projector and illuminates the object. The depth camera assembly captures images of the object. The controller uses the captured images to determine depth information of the object.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 31, 2017
    Date of Patent: November 5, 2019
    Assignee: Facebook Technologies, LLC
    Inventors: Andrew Matthew Bardagjy, Joseph Duggan, Cina Hazegh, Fei Liu, Mark Timothy Sullivan, Simon Morris Shand Weiss
  • Patent number: 10453877
    Abstract: A CMOS detector with pairs of interdigitated elongated finger-like collection gates includes p+ implanted regions that create charge barrier regions that can intentionally be overcome. These regions steer charge to a desired collection gate pair for collection. The p+ implanted regions may be formed before and/or after formation of the collection gates. These regions form charge barrier regions when an associated collection gate is biased low. The barriers are overcome when an associated collection gate is high. These barrier regions steer substantially all charge to collection gates that are biased high, enhancing modulation contrast. Advantageously, the resultant structure has reduced power requirements in that inter-gate capacitance is reduced in that inter-gate spacing can be increased over prior art gate spacing and lower swing voltages may be used. Also higher modulation contrast is achieved in that the charge collection area of the low gate(s) is significantly reduced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 1, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2019
    Assignee: MICROSOFT TECHNOLOGY LICENSING, LLC
    Inventor: Cyrus Bamji
  • Patent number: 10451716
    Abstract: A lidar system comprises a light source to emit pulses of light, a scanner, a receiver, and a controller. The scanner includes a rotatable polygon mirror with reflective surfaces, the reflective surfaces being angularly offset from one another along a periphery of the block. The scanner further includes a polygon mirror axle extending into the block, about which the block rotates, a rotary encoder having a rotational component with an axis of rotation aligned with the polygon mirror axle, the rotational component having one or more characteristics configured to cause the rotary encoder to return a signal, and a second mirror pivotable along an axis orthogonal to the polygon mirror axle. The controller is configured to determine a rotational parameter of the polygon mirror in response to the signal returned from the rotary encoder.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 20, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2019
    Assignee: Luminar Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: John Hughes, Nicholas Ventola, Sean P. Hughes
  • Patent number: 10451740
    Abstract: A lidar system includes a laser source, a photodetector, an emission lens, a receiving lens, and a processor. The laser source is configured to be translated through a plurality of emission locations, and to emit a plurality of laser pulses therefrom. The emission lens is configured to collimate and direct the plurality of laser pulses towards an object. The receiving lens is configured to focus the portion of each of the plurality of laser pulses reflected off of the object to a plurality of detection locations. The photodetector is configured to be translated through the plurality of detection locations, and to detect the portion of each of the plurality of laser pulses. The processor is configured to determine a time of flight for each of the plurality of laser pulses from emission to detection, and construct a three-dimensional image of the object based on the determined time of flight.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 16, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2019
    Assignee: CEPTON TECHNOLOGIES, INC.
    Inventors: Jun Pei, Mark McCord, Jun Ye
  • Patent number: 10451715
    Abstract: Embodiments of the present disclosure use an “on chip” silicon LED to generate a light signal for calibration of a range finder. The light signal from the silicon LED may be detected by photo detectors in a reference path and a receive path of the range finder to generate a calibration phase offset, which may be subtracted out from a phase offset measurement of the range finder to correct the phase offset measurement for component mismatch due to, for example, environment, process variation, aging, etc.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 22, 2019
    Assignee: PLETHRON INC.
    Inventor: Charles Chu
  • Patent number: 10444361
    Abstract: A laser tracker for industrial coordinative position determination of a target, wherein the laser tracker at least comprises a control and evaluation unit, a base and a beam directing unit, means for detecting a rotation angle of the beam directing unit relative to the base, and a first optical distance measuring unit having at least a first beam source and a first detection unit. The distance measuring unit and the control and evaluation unit are designed for implementing a first and a second measurement functionality, where at least one element of the distance measuring unit is designed for dual use in the first and in the second measurement functionality. The first measurement functionality is for coordinative position determination of a retroreflective target, and the second measurement functionality is for position determination of a diffusely scattering target.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 14, 2017
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2019
    Assignee: LEICA GEOSYSTEMS AG
    Inventors: Thomas Lüthi, Veroljub Maksimovic
  • Patent number: 10444351
    Abstract: The present invention provides an embodiment of an electronic device, including: an ultrasonic transmitting transducer, arranged to transmit a first ultrasonic signal, at a first time point, to an object to be tested at a first time point, wherein the first ultrasonic signal is reflected by the object to be tested to serve as a second ultrasonic signal; first, second and third ultrasonic receiving transducers, arranged to receive the second ultrasonic signal; and a processor, arranged to use Short-Time Fourier Transform to calculate a second time point, a third time point, and a fourth time point at which the first, second and third ultrasonic receiving transducers receive the second ultrasonic signal, and arranged to calculate the relative positions of the object to be tested and the ultrasonic transmitting transducer according to the second time point, the third time point, and the fourth time point.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 18, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2019
    Assignee: NATIONAL TSING HUA UNIVERSITY
    Inventors: Chih-Kuang Yeh, Hsaing-Ching Lin
  • Patent number: 10444359
    Abstract: Embodiments describe a solid state electronic scanning LIDAR system that includes a scanning focal plane transmitting element and a scanning focal plane receiving element whose operations are synchronized so that the firing sequence of an emitter array in the transmitting element corresponds to a capturing sequence of a photosensor array in the receiving element. During operation, the emitter array can sequentially fire one or more light emitters into a scene and the reflected light can be received by a corresponding set of one or more photosensors through an aperture layer positioned in front of the photosensors. Each light emitter can correspond with an aperture in the aperture layer, and each aperture can correspond to a photosensor in the receiving element such that each light emitter corresponds with a specific photosensor in the receiving element.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 5, 2018
    Date of Patent: October 15, 2019
    Assignee: Ouster, Inc.
    Inventors: Angus Pacala, Mark Frichtl
  • Patent number: 10436581
    Abstract: A distance sensing apparatus includes a light source configured to emit polarized light. A light sensitive detector detects light emitted by said light source and reflected from a target. The light sensitive detector is configured to substantially prevent polarized light reflected from a target with a relatively high reflectance from being detected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: STMicroelectronics (Research & Development) Limited
    Inventors: Sam Lee, John Kevin Moore, Francescopaolo Mattioli Della Rocca
  • Patent number: 10436904
    Abstract: A laser distance and ranging (LADAR) array is provided. The LADAR array includes a plurality of LADAR modules, each LADAR module configured to scan a laser beam through a field of view (FOV) and output a signal indicative of a distance between each LADAR module and objects in the FOV that the laser beam is incident upon, and a central processing device communicatively coupled to the plurality of LADAR modules, the central processing device configured to generate an output based at least in part on the signals of each LADAR module.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 15, 2015
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: THE BOEING COMPANY
    Inventors: Robert Douglas Moss, Scott B. Singer, Alexander C. Standridge, Ping Yuan, Rengarajan Sudharsanan
  • Patent number: 10436906
    Abstract: The present disclosure relates to systems and methods for determining a range and relative speed of objects in an environment. An example method includes causing a laser light source to emit a plurality of light pulses, both incoherent and coherent. The light pulses interact with an environment to provide reflected light pulses. The method includes providing a local oscillator signal based on a coherent light pulse. The method also includes receiving, at a detector, the reflected light pulses, and the local oscillator signal. The method additionally includes determining, based on at least one of the reflected light pulses, a presence of an object in the environment. The method yet further includes determining, based on another reflected light pulse and the local oscillator signal, a relative speed of the object with respect to the detector.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 23, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 8, 2019
    Assignee: Waymo LLC
    Inventor: Pierre-Yves Droz
  • Patent number: 10429496
    Abstract: Improved flash light detection and ranging (also referred to herein as “flash LIDAR”) systems and methods for determining the distance to a target object disposed in a field-of-view. A flash LIDAR system can include an array of illuminators, an array of light detectors, and a signal processor/controller, as well as have a field-of-view in which a target object may be disposed. The flash LIDAR system can effectively divide the field-of-view into a plurality of segments, and each illuminator in the illuminator array can be made to correspond to a specific segment of the field-of-view. The flash LIDAR system can also effectively divide the light detector array into a plurality of subsets of light detectors. Like the respective illuminators in the illuminator array, each subset of light detectors in the light detector array can be made to correspond to a specific segment of the field-of-view.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 27, 2016
    Date of Patent: October 1, 2019
    Assignee: Analog Devices, Inc.
    Inventor: Harvey Weinberg
  • Patent number: 10422865
    Abstract: Methods, computer-readable media, and apparatuses for estimating a distance of an object from a Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) system is disclosed. In one embodiment, the method includes transmitting a first light signal towards the object using a LIDAR system, and detecting a second light signal by a light sensor to generate a detected signal. The second light signal includes a reflection of the first light signal from the object. The method further includes generating a filtered signal by applying a time-dependent adjustable filter to the detected signal, and estimating the distance of the object from the LIDAR system based at least on the filtered signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 24, 2019
    Assignee: QUALCOMM Incorporated
    Inventors: Linda Irish, William Henry Von Novak
  • Patent number: 10416292
    Abstract: A LiDAR system and method include a signal generator generating an output signal having a variable frequency. A modulation circuit receives the output signal from the signal generator and applies the output signal from the signal generator to an optical signal to generate an envelope-modulated optical signal having a frequency-modulated (FM) modulation envelope. Optical transmission elements transmit the envelope-modulated optical signal into a region. Optical receiving elements receive reflected optical signals from the region. Receive signal processing circuitry receives the reflected optical signals and uses quadrature detection to process the reflected optical signals.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2019
    Assignee: VEONEER US, INC.
    Inventors: Bernard de Mersseman, Kenneth V. Puglia
  • Patent number: 10416294
    Abstract: A ranging device includes an array of photon detection devices that receive an optical signal reflected by an object in an image scene and first and second logic devices to respectively combine the outputs of first and second pluralities of the photon detection devices. First and second counter circuits are respectively coupled an output of the first and second logic devices and generate first and second count values respectively by counting the photon detection events generated by the first and second pluralities of photon detection devices. A range estimation circuit estimates the range of the object by estimating the timing of one or more pulses of said optical signal based on the first and second count values.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 31, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2019
    Assignees: STMicroelectronics (Research & Development) Limited, STMicroelectronics (Genoble 2) SAS
    Inventors: Pascal Mellot, Stuart McLeod, Marc Drader
  • Patent number: 10418776
    Abstract: A lidar system can include a solid-state laser to emit pulses of light. The solid-state laser can include a Q-switched laser having a gain medium and a Q-switch. The lidar system can also include a scanner configured to scan the emitted pulses of light across a field of regard and a receiver configured to detect at least a portion of the scanned pulses of light scattered by a target located a distance from the lidar system. The lidar system can also include a processor configured to determine the distance from the lidar system to the target based at least in part on a round-trip time of flight for an emitted pulse of light to travel from the lidar system to the target and back to the lidar system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 21, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 17, 2019
    Assignee: Luminar Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: David Welford, Martin A. Jaspan, Jason M. Eichenholz, Scott R. Campbell, Lane A. Martin, Matthew D. Weed
  • Patent number: 10408926
    Abstract: Aspects of the disclosure are related to a Lidar device, comprising: a vibrating fiber optic cantilever system on a transmit (TX) path; and a two-dimensional (2D) light sensor array on a receive (RX) path.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2019
    Assignee: QUALCOMM Incorporated
    Inventors: Volodimir Slobodyanyuk, Karim Arabi, Evgeni Gousev
  • Patent number: 10408604
    Abstract: A method for estimating distances from a baseplate to arbitrary objects or surfaces around the baseplate. Two laser emitters emitting converging collimated laser beams, an image sensor, and an image processor are provided on the baseplate. Images of the laser projections on surfaces are captured by the image sensor. Captured images are sent to the image processor which extracts the pixel data of the laser projections within the images. The distance between the laser projections of the two laser emitters is analyzed and compared to figures in a preconfigured table that relates distances between laser projections with corresponding distances of the baseplate to projection surfaces in order to estimate a distance of the baseplate to the projection surface in the images.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 6, 2016
    Date of Patent: September 10, 2019
    Assignee: AI Incorporated
    Inventors: Ali Ebrahimi Afrouzi, Soroush Mehrnia
  • Patent number: 10401481
    Abstract: A lidar system includes a light source configured to emit light, a scanner configured to scan a field of regard of the lidar system using (i) a first output beam that includes at least a portion of the emitted light and has a first amount of power and (ii) a second output beam that includes at least a portion of the emitted light and has a second amount of power different from the first amount of power, with an angular separation between the first output beam and the second output beam along a vertical dimension of the field of regard, and a receiver configured to detect light associated with the first output beam and light associated with the second output beam scattered by one or more remote targets.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2018
    Date of Patent: September 3, 2019
    Assignee: Luminar Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Scott R. Campbell, Matthew D. Weed, Lane A. Martin, Jason M. Eichenholz
  • Patent number: 10393517
    Abstract: Laser source modification techniques for a laser-based rangefinding or speed measurement instrument enabling increased range, better defined beam pattern and improved accuracy through the use of diffusers and/or spatial filters while still remaining within applicable Class 1 eye-safety limits.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 27, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 27, 2019
    Assignees: Laser Technology, Inc., Kama-Tech (HK) Limited
    Inventor: Jeremy G. Dunne