How lidar (laser) works

01. 02. 2016

This article is about how lidars (lasers). If you want to see more and how it works, please take a look at this article.

How lidar (laser) works

How it works?

The use of lasers or lidar (light detection and ranging) for speed enforcement is growing every year and will soon be the standard for law enforcement departments around the world. Laser Technology's design process for speed equipment is driven by the demands of real world needs. Enforcing speeds within multilane highways and discouraging the use of radar and lidar detectors are just a few. The most important need law agencies have to address is that their speed enforcement equipment has to stand up in court.
Due to the laser's signal being instantaneous, radar and lidar detectors are useless. Even if a lidar detector alarms the driver, it is already too late. All our lasers can make a measurement within 0.3 seconds, so by the time your detector recognizes our laser's signal, the officer will already have a speed-reading on you.
Laser works very differently from radar. The laser gun sends out a beam of laser light that is so narrow and precise it must be aimed with an optical sight, like those used by sharpshooters. The operator looks through the sight, aims at a specific vehicle, and pulls the trigger, sending out a beam of light. When this beam is reflected back to the laser unit, the unit provides a speed reading. Because of the narrow beams, laser units are hand-held, and can only be used from a stationary position.

Common laser errors

Both human error and the nature of laser light contribute to errors. For example, laser can only be used at a distance of a thousand feet. This does not give much time for aiming or vehicle identification. Environmental and usage conditions also affect laser. Rain, fog, and snow can lead to false readings, as can reflections of laser light from highway structures and other vehicles.
As with any complex electronic device, there can be technical malfunctions and miscalibrations. It’s even possible for the optical sight to be misaligned, so the operator aims at one vehicle, and clocks another.
Laser is inherently more difficult to use and sensitive to environmental conditions. In fact, because of inaccuracies, some jurisdictions have refused to give laser judicial notice, which is required before a device is authorized to be used for measuring speed by law enforcement agencies.

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