LW20 and SF20 LiDAR sensors

LightWare Optoelectronics introduce the LW20 and the SF20 OEM version.

The price is not known yet, but the specifications look great. Only two features differ between LW20 and SF20. The first difference is the housing material, which is aluminum for LW20 and an open frame for SF20. The second difference is the environmental protection of enclosures around electronic equipment which works for the LW20 sensor.

Otherwise, this is the introduction of the sensors:

The LW20 and SF20 miniature laser rangefinders offer high performance in a very small form factor. The LW20 is a sealed unit designed to withstand water splashes and dust whilst the SF20 is a lightweight, open frame unit ideal for OEM integration. Both units can measure more than 100 m in sunlit conditions and can measure down to almost zero distance. These professional grade sensors take up to 678 readings per second and provide distances to both the first and last signals with each measurement. The laser beam is encoded so that units can be aimed at the same target without interfering with each other, enabling multiple redundancy and allowing for many UAVs to operate safely in the same area. Serial or I2C communications ports provide a comprehensive suite of commands and the unit can be switched into power saving mode when not in use.


  • Very small size
  • Choose either a water and dust resistant unit (LW20) or a lightweight open frame module (SF20)
  • Weight of less than 10 g for the SF20
  • Water and dust resistant to IP67 for the LW20
  • Long measuring range beyond 100 m
  • High speed readings up to 678 per second
  • First and last signals measured with each reading
  • Encoded laser pulses for multiple systems
  • Serial or I2C interfaces compatible with 3.3 V or 5 V systems
  • Low power consumption with power saving mode


  • Distance measurement
  • Laser altimeters for small or large UAVs
  • High reliability systems using redundant sensors
  • Scanning laser systems for mapping or obstacle sensing


  • Model number LW20 ********** SF20
  • Maximum range [m / ft] 110 / 360 ********** 110 / 360
  • Minimum range ~ 0 ********** ~ 0
  • Maximum update rate [rps] 678 ********** 678
  • Resolution [cm] 1 ********** 1
  • Accuracy [cm] ±5 ********** ±5
  • Weight [g / oz] 20 / 0.7 ********** 10 / 0.35
  • Dimensions [mm] 20 x 30 x 35 ********** 20 x 30 x 32
  • Housing material Aluminium ********** open frame
  • IP rating IP67 ********** —
  • Operating temperature [C] -20 .. +60 ********** -20 .. +60
  • Power supply [V] 5 ± 0.5 ********** 5 ± 0.5
  • Operating / standby current [mA] 170 / 45 ********** 170 / 45

1. Maximum range is measured against a stationary, large white target in full sunlight at 84 readings per second
2. Maximum operating temperature depends on suitable airflow or heat sink

LW20 LiDAR – half the size, twice the performance, infinitely better.

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