The company claims its technology is capable of a range of 150 meters and mega-pixel resolution, or approximately 50 times the performance of rotating lidar.
The funding round was led by Third Point Ventures and Walden Riverwood Ventures joined by Union Tech Ventures, and existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Maniv Mobility, and Trucks VC.
Instead of rotating mechanically, the Oryx Vision approach is to illuminate the scene once and receive return signals at an array of antenna that are implemented in 5-micron silicon. The simplicity of the system will reduce the cost of automotive depth sensing by an order of magnitude the company claims. The high resolution will allow the use of simpler algorithms and less processing power to make the right driving decisions. And the use of long-wave infrared will allow the system to operate in direct sunlight and severe weather conditions.
Oryx said it will use the new funds to accelerate its development activities and to intensify its commercial engagements with car OEMs, tier-1 suppliers, and technology players. Having demonstrated the unique capabilities of its technology over the past year, the company expects to ship units for car-mounted testing in the second half of 2018.
"Oryx tackles the lidar challenge by innovating its fundamental light sensing element," said Lip Bu Tan, managing director of Walden Riverwood Ventures, in a statement issued by Oryx. "As hardware and semiconductor investors, this is very exciting to us. We believe building a true solid-state, silicon-based system will be essential for creating automotive-grade high performance lidar."
Oryx was founded in 2009 by electro-optics expert David Ben-Bassat, who previously founded RFWaves and sold it to Vishay.
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