About Kitware’s Lidar SLAM 

Kitware develops a modular open source Lidar-SLAM algorithm, built upon a LOAM approach, and adding state of the art methods to improve its results in various conditions, including live processing.

SLAM stands for Simultaneous Localization And Mapping and it addresses two dependent challenges : mapping a 3D environment and estimating the pose of a mobile reference system in it.

It allows the integration of external sensors (Camera, GPS, IMU, wheel odometer…) using open-source libraries to reach the state of the art Lidar SLAM performances. It is already available through LidarView, ROS and ROS2. Thanks to its documented API and its BSD license, it can be embedded into your application, and modified in any way you need, including for commercial use!

What is ROS

ROS is an operating system that makes it easier for developers to quickly create powerful applications. With ROS, much of that work has already been done for you, providing very useful tools. Such as sensor drivers, data filters, visualization interfaces, simulators, and a lot of different algorithm blocks that are plug and play in ROS environments.

ROS also helps you connect all the different parts of your robot, like the sensors and controllers, so they work together smoothly. 

Moreover, ROS is an open-source project with a large community, you can collaborate with other people, sharing ideas and building off each other’s work.
To learn more about ROS, see the official tutorial.

How to use our SLAM with ROS

Below is an example how to launch our SLAM with ROS. Using the ROS tools catkin and Rviz.

Data used are available here.

New features incoming from ROS2

Kitware’s Lidar SLAM package has recently been migrated to ROS2 on Linux platforms. Adapted for the needs of the robotics industry, ROS2 offers a lot of improved and new features such as :

  • Better support for real-time system
  • Improved security 
  • A new communication system using DDS technology
  • A scalability capable to answer industrial needs
  • Multi platform support, available on Linux, Windows and macOS

Kitware’s Lidar SLAM will soon be available on Windows 10 with ROS2 and improved reliability for real-time applications.

Use our SLAM with ROS to map the world!

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