I’ve just stumbled across this TeraRanger IR LED LiDAR which uses IR LEDs instead of lasers. It’s as accurate as a laser version. This combined with the Kickstarter 2D 360° sweep LiDAR I’ve backed would then provide the nearly 3D (no upwards pointing range-finder!) to make Phoebe fully autonomous.
I know it’s a cop-out using LiDAR instead of RaspiCam DIY solutions, but unless I have a “Eureka” moment, nothing I’ve tried with the RaspiCam provides the necessary accuracy or frequenciy that these two LiDAR solutions can to allow Phoebe to be truly autonomous.
The TeraRanger is already on its way from Cern (French / Swiss border). Sadly the Kickstarter isn’t due to start shipping until Q4 and like all Kickstarter projects this is bound to slip.