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

LightWare Optoelectronics is proud to share with you some preliminary data on their new miniature laser range finder modules, the LW20 and the SF20 OEM version. These modules will be available later this year and as part of our program of supporting the DIY market we will be offering the OEM module to individual customers as well. The prices will be announced at the time of the official launch ;).


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

LightWare Optoelectronics (Pty) Ltd  is an ISO9001 certified manufacturer of laser products for UAVs, industrial, aircraft and other applications. The attached information is subject to change without notice.

Views: 6018

Comment by Jason Franciosa on October 4, 2016 at 6:21am

Excellent news! Hopefully the cost is in the DIY budget, but, looks great! Definetly a huge addition to all types of drone platforms

Comment by Paul Meier on October 4, 2016 at 6:24am

I am salivating and my mitts are sweaty... Well done, please put a preorder page online

Comment by Rob_Lefebvre on October 4, 2016 at 6:32am

Comment by satapathy on October 4, 2016 at 9:02am

Ca you go down on the weight up to 5 grams? 

Comment by Brian on October 4, 2016 at 9:31am

What is the beam divergence?

Comment by Gary McCray on October 4, 2016 at 10:11am

Fantastic news LD, 

Truly excellent specs.

Definitely sign me up.



Comment by Hugues on October 4, 2016 at 10:41am

Take my money!

Comment by Thomas Stone on October 4, 2016 at 4:58pm

Great news! Can't wait to test it out. 

Comment by Laser Developer on October 4, 2016 at 10:56pm

Thanks to all for the positive feedback :). We think that this will be the smallest laser range finder in the world to offer genuine long range performance and the features of a survey grade device.

@Satyabrata - Why? The open frame SF20 unit weighs around 9g...

@Brian - we haven't decided on the exact beam divergence yet but it should be less than 0.5 degrees.

Comment by Andy Brito on October 5, 2016 at 10:33am
When will it be available to order?


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