After more than 20 years working in the automotive industry – and specifically with driver assistance and self-driving technology – I am proud and excited for the opportunity to work with Baraja. As the Vice President of Automotive Engineering and Product at Baraja, I have the unique opportunity to help introduce the world to the first road-ready LiDAR for autonomous vehicles that will ultimately make our roadways and transportation easier and safer.
I’ll admit, when I was first introduced to Baraja, I was skeptical. They were a small start-up that I hadn’t even heard of up until that point. I had also worked with and reviewed many other LiDAR companies in the past and had been frustrated with the lack of transparency and insight as to how their technology worked. However, after just the first meeting with the company’s founders, I was impressed by their unique approach and openness to demonstrating exactly how and why the Baraja Spectrum-Scan™ LiDAR worked. I also witnessed their willingness to work with key partners and accept feedback to further develop and perfect their LiDAR for autonomous vehicle applications.
It was this transparency and collaborative culture, in addition to what I believe is a winning technology, that sold me on joining Baraja in a long-term capacity.
The Baraja Spectrum-Scan™ platform is one-of-a-kind in that it relies on an optic-like lens and RMCW lasers to achieve a range of over 200m, up to 2000 lines of vertical resolution, and an ability to selectively focus in on key objects at long range. Further, this is all achieved with complete interference immunity from other lasers or light sources, no speckle or pointcloud blur, and using small, low-cost parts that have already been used extensively in the telecommunication industry, making the LiDAR scalable and affordable.
I look forward to working with the team of engineers and product managers to further develop the Baraja LiDAR. I also plan to make key connections and strategic partnerships, like our recent partnership with Tier-1 Supplier Veoneer, and to develop a long-term roadmap for how we will turn this small start-up into a global business that enables smarter, more reliable, and most importantly, safer vehicles for people around the world. Because at the end of the day, technology is about improving people’s lives.
Driving a safer future with Baraja
When people ask me what I do for a living, I tell them I work on technology to make their car safer.
Autonomous technology for automotive is not just about zooming from destination to destination while being free to catch up on work, scroll through your phone, or even take a nap. For me, it’s about creating a world that is more reliable, more efficient, and ultimately safer for everyone.
Every year, more than 38,000 people in the United States die from auto accidents and a further 4.4 million are left with serious injuries. Autonomous vehicles, and the LiDAR that enables them, have the power to drastically reduce that number – and Baraja has the technology that is capable of meeting those safety requirements.
Traditionally vehicles relied on mechanical connections between the brake and accelerator pedals to control the vehicle, today however millions of lines of software are between the driver and the vehicle, making the driver’s input merely a recommendation to the system. This technology enables autonomous driving but also introduces safety concerns and the need for redundancy making the need for fool-proof detection and data accuracy a top priority for LiDAR – the eyes of the vehicle.
At Baraja, we have developed a LiDAR sensor that can help vehicles see further and clearer so that it has the power to make critical split-second decisions that can prevent accidents and save lives.
The Baraja Spectrum-Scan™ LiDAR can see a person crossing a street in the dark up to 200m ahead, and can also determine what the object is, even when you can’t. Further, it can zoom in and collect information about where that person is standing, whether they’re moving and in which direction, allowing our customers to make predictions as to what that person may do next. That long-range, reliable vision is what influences the vehicle’s decision as to whether it should slow down, deviate, or brake.
With a reliable and robust LiDAR like ours, we’ll be able to ensure vehicles are powered with the most detailed information and contribute to a safer road environment that will improve the lives of thousands, and eventually millions, of people around the world.
The future of LiDAR
I predict that over the next several years, Baraja will see rapid growth and quickly become a recognized name in the automotive and technology industry. Our existing LiDAR sensors are in the field already, our automotive LiDAR sensor will be ready to hit the road within the next two years, and we’re prepared to work with strategic partners across the automotive industry to make it happen. Joining a company like Baraja with the technology and the culture capable of bringing a completely new era of automotive to fruition is a rare and exciting opportunity. I look forward to playing my role in helping more people power their lives with the Baraja Spectrum-Scan™ LiDAR.
If you’re in the market for an endgame LiDAR that can power your autonomous goals, contact our sales team today.