GP2D12 distance sensor. See it here. May update: Brian Bagnall's Core lego Mindstorms programming book contains - among various interesting topics - a full chapter on the construction of this sensor. Complete step by step instructions are provided! I long thought that a distance sensor would be a nice addition to Mindstorms robots, but ultrasonic ones were bulky and power hungry I've since found Robot Electronics Ultrasonic Range Finder that can perhaps be used , and simple infrared method like the one I used in my radar car detects obstacles but don't give true distance measurement.
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The GP2D12 is a distance measuring sensor with integrated signal processing and analog voltage output. NOTES: 1.
Table 1. Test conditions are according to Electro-optical Characteristics, shown on page 2. At completion of the test, allow device to remain at nominal room temperature and humidity non-condensing for two hours. Table 2. Dimensions shall reference lens center. Each tray holds 50 pieces. Packing methods are shown in A. Each box holds 10 trays.
Pads are added to top and bottom, and between layers, as in B. Put pads between each tray 9 pads total see above drawing B. The box is sealed with craft tape. C shows the location of the Model number, Quantity, and Inspection date. Package weight: Approximately 4 kg.
Often, changing the incident angle on the mirror can correct this problem. Dust, water, oil, and other contaminants can deteriorate the characteristics of this device. Applications should be designed to eliminate sources of lens contamination. See Figure 6 for further details. Both sides of the protective cover should be highly polished.
Use of a protective cover may decrease the effective distance over which the sensor operates. Ensure that any cover does not negatively affect the operation over the intended application range. Figure 7 illustrates the preferred alignment. Use of any liquid to clean the device may result in decreased sensitivity or complete failure. For best results, the application should be designed to prevent interference from direct sunlight or artificial light.
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GP2D12 Sensors. Datasheet pdf. Equivalent
Application note for an infrared, triangultation-based distance sensor with an analog, non-linear output. I hope it will help some robotists to make this sensor work quite easily and to avoid certain pitfalls. This range finder is one of the most commonly used in autonomous robotics applications for hobbyists and also in academic research. The main motivation for this choice is that the digital version is almost twice slower than the GP2D12 update period about 75ms against 40ms for the analog version. Table 1 gives a brief overview of the GP2D12 specifications. Note: it is very important to put a good capacitor something like 22uF between GND and Vcc, directly on the sensor itself, in order to reduce the noise on the 5V power supply due to the current required by the emitting LED. In the other hand, avoid the use of a capacitor between the signal output and GND or Vcc: it may dramatically reduce the sensor dynamics low pass filter.