CES Las Vegas 2019: LiDAR specialist Ibeo Automotive Systems is taking part in the Rinspeed “microSNAP” project with a new sensor

Hamburg, 18.12.2018 – The Hamburg-based LiDAR specialist Ibeo Automotive is taking part in the Rinspeed “microSNAP” project at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas in 2019 with its latest LiDAR sensor, the ibeo NEXT. Thanks to Ibeo technology, autonomous vehicles can navigate safely even in urban environments with many obstacles. The “microSNAP” acts both as a passenger shuttle and a cargo taxi and was unveiled at the CES in 2018. Ibeo – one of the leading technology providers for LiDAR sensors in the automotive sector worldwide – ensures reliable detection of obstacles and people with its latest measurement technology and object detection software in the ibeo NEXT, so that autonomous vehicles can respond quickly.

For the Swiss vehicle visionary and company boss of Rinspeed, Frank M. Rinderknecht, the age in which large lorries supply customers in succession throughout the day like pearls on a string has gone. Online trade is booming and the fresh food sector, as part of that, is growing ever more strongly. The Swiss entrepreneur therefore believes in small, autonomous vehicles that will stream out and supply their cargo to customers just in time, with no detours. But his vision also includes two-seater “robo units” that will take passengers comfortably and efficiently to their destination by the shortest route.

“In conurbations in particular, customers want fast, prompt delivery. Passengers also want to be taken from A to B individually and without detours”, explains Dr. Ulrich Lages, CEO of Ibeo Automotive Systems. “The autonomous microSNAP from Rinspeed is therefore a good solution for both inner city delivery traffic and urban mobility in the future. We see it as a perfect application for our LiDAR technology for autonomous navigation in complex environments.”

Frank M. Rinderknecht adds: “We need reliable software and sensors for our microSNAPs to move autonomously and safely along the roads. We have opted for the newly developed ibeo NEXT sensor for this – a solid state sensor of the latest generation. The Hamburg-based LiDAR specialist Ibeo has been developing LiDAR systems for 20 years and is therefore a reliable partner for us in many projects.”

Ibeo NEXT sensor triggers the next level of autonomous driving

Ibeo is presenting a solid state scanner of the latest LiDAR generation at the CES. Standard LiDAR sensors currently work with mechanically operated mirrors and can therefore already detect objects up to 200 metres away from a vehicle. The so-called solid state ibeo NEXT scanner, which is currently being developed by Ibeo Automotive, has no moving parts at all and instead relies purely on a semi-conductor solution. As a result of the absence of mechanical components, solid state scanners are not only smaller, more robust and therefore more reliable over the long term, they also impress with their high resolution and a large vertical “field of view”. This is a crucial advantage, especially if the application will also have to detect the third dimension in future – to control drones, for example.

Rinspeed “microSNAP” at the CES

With the “Snap”, unveiled at the CES in Las Vegas in 2018, the Swiss pioneer Rinspeed introduced the first vehicle in which the chassis (“skateboards”) and the vehicle body (“pods”) are interchangeable. “Think mighty micro!” is the new Rinspeed slogan at the CES 2019. Rinderknecht has shrunk the “Snap” to the “microSNAP”, which is the size of a Renault Twizy. And for the first time he is demonstrating a fully automated robot station which assembles and disassembles the chassis and the body on its own. Rinderknecht is planning a spin-off company as a start-up and is already in discussion with investors to bring the “Snap” onto the roads.

Ibeo can be found at the CES Las Vegas at its own stand (#9500), with the ibeo NEXT sensor at the stand of ZF (#8500) and with the “microSNAP” in the Harman Venue at the Hard Rock Hotel.

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