Bill Gates funded lidar startup partners with LCOS maker

Bill Gates funded lidar startup partners with LCOS maker

Technology News |
Lumotive LLC (Bellevue, Washington), the Bill Gates backed startup developing metamaterials-based lidar, has announced a partnership with Himax Display Inc. (Tainan, Taiwan) a maker of liquid crystal on silicon (LCOS) devices.
By Peter Clarke


Although the LCOS devices are conventionally used for viewfinder displays the plan is to use the manufacturing technique to mass produce beam-steering lidars based on Lumotive’s liquid crystal metasurface technology. Lumotive is hopeful that its technique can prove superior to spinning assemblies, MEMS-based optics or optical phased arrays.

Lumotive’s lidar systems offer the combination of: large optical aperture of 25mm by 25 mm that delivers long range, a 120-degree field-of-view with high angular resolution, and rapid, random-access beam steering. The expectation is that Lumotive lidar should also achieve a small form factor that is appealing to automobile makers but also for consumer and industrial applications.

“Himax’s industry-leading LCOS technology and in-depth LC know-how perfectly complement our LCM technology,” said Lumotive co-founder and CEO, William Colleran, in a statement. “Our combined approach is an innovative technological advance that lowers cost, improves performance and ultimately speeds time-to-market for reliable lidar systems that make self-driving cars viable and safe.”

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