Ball Aerospace apparently makes Geiger-mode lidar, receives defense and aerospace manufacturing license from Argo AI

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Geiger-mode and single-photon lidar have been hot topics in the large-area mapping space since their debut on the commercial market at ILMF in 2015. Since that day, there have been a few handovers, with Leica Geosystems’ parent company Hexagon buying single-photon lidar manufacturer SigmaSpace, and Ford’s subsidiary Argo AI snapping up Geiger-mode manufacturer Princeton Lightwave.

That trend continues this week as Argo AI “granted” Ball Aersopace its geiger-mode lidar manufacturing license for the US aerospace and defense industries. These Geiger-mode sensors, according to Ball, are a “a critical component to non-conventional imaging and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems, which are used in U.S. Department of Defense, space and other government missions.”

Ball will manufacture three options of of “Geiger-mode cameras,” with “opportunities to expand upon existing technology to meet future customer needs.”

In a recently published brochure for its Geiger-mode sensors, Ball says the sensors will be available for government and commercial use in addition to defense and space applications. The brochure appears to indicate that Ball’s lidar will be available for purchase by users of Princeton Lightwave sensors need a replacement or upgrade. This could make Ball the only vendor of Geiger-mode lidar sensors on the market following Princeton Lightwave’s acquisition by Argo AI.

SPAR has reached out to Ball for a further explanation of its business model, but received no response as of this publication.

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SPAR 3D Editor Sean Higgins produces SPAR 3D's weekly newsletters for 3D-scanning professionals, and spar3d.com. Sean has previously worked as a technical writer, a researcher, a freelance technology writer, and an editor for various arts publications. He has degrees from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts and the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, where he studied the history of sound-recording technologies. Sean is a native of Maine and lives in Portland.

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