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Hokuyo URG LIDAR Drivers Integrated into National Instruments LabVIEW Robotics Software
LIDAR drivers are integrated into National Instruments LabVIEW Robotics 2009 software.
By Robotics Trends Staff - Filed Jan 19, 2010

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NI’s newly released LabVIEW Robotics 2009 software, used to design and prototype sophisticated robotics control systems, now includes drivers for Hokuyo’s URG family of compact laser range finders.

Hokuyo Automatic Co., Ltd. announced that National Instruments has integrated drivers for Hokuyo’s URG Laser Range Finders (or known as LIDAR) as a standard feature for the newly released NI LabVIEW Robotics 2009 software.

Hokuyo’s URG sensors have been recognized as the smallest laser range finders available on the market and are suitable for small robotics platforms. Since released in 2004, the URG-04LX has been widely used in robotics research laboratories around the world. Currently more than half a dozen of models are available to handle various needs of robotic researchers.

“The release of NI LabVIEW Robotics, which supports Hokuyo’s URG sensors, provides robotics researchers as well as hobbyists the access to a world-class robotic platform,” said Mr. Toshihiro Mori, Director of Engineering at Hokuyo. “Researchers can move quickly to interested research topics while spending less time on building robots from scratch.”

Integration of Hokuyo’s URG drivers in LabVIEW Robotics creates an ideal environment for developing advanced applications and algorithms based on laser range finders such as intelligent navigation, 3-D mapping, path planning and collision avoidance. The graphical programming of LabVIEW combined with the easy-to-use SCIP 2.0 communications protocol for Hokuyo’s URG family of laser range finders delivers a fast-track solution for developing intelligent robotic systems.

“The intuitive graphical programming of LabVIEW and easy-to-use Hokuyo’s laser range finder will accelerate robotics research and development,” said Mr. Toshihiro Mori. “Now undergraduate students or even high school students can start learning to develop high level robot behaviors, which in the past could only be done in the robotics labs of research institutes.”

“Collaborations like we have with Hokuyo are critical to help National Instruments provide customers with the most robust commercial robotics solutions possible,” said Shelley Gretlein, Senior Group Manager of Real-Time and Embedded Software at National Instruments. “By integrating Hokuyo URG drivers for LIDAR in LabVIEW Robotics, we have greatly enriched our NI robotics offerings to address our customers’ demand for a highly advanced user-friendly solution to complex robotics problems.”

“The National Instruments use of Hokuyo laser range finders as standard LIDARs for LabVIEW Robotics is a natural choice considering cost and performance that fit requirements of robotics researchers,” said Mr. Toshihiro Mori. “The acceptance of Hokuyo LIDAR by worldwide users of LabVIEW is expected to fuel the growth in volume of URG production. The construction of our new 60,000 square-foot factory in Osaka, Japan will start later this year. This initiative confirms Hokuyo commitment in research and development of better and smaller LIDARs for robotic research communities”.

About Hokuyo Automatic Co., Ltd.
Hokuyo ( is a manufacturer of advanced optical sensors and optical communication devices headquartered in Osaka, Japan. Hokuyo sensor and communication equipment is a de facto standard for material handling systems of semiconductor industries. Utilizing several decades of expertise in optical and laser technologies, Hokuyo expands its product lines into compact LIDARs known as URG sensor family suitable for small robotic platforms.

About National Instruments
National Instruments ( is transforming the way engineers and scientists design, prototype and deploy systems for measurement, automation and embedded applications. NI empowers customers with off-the-shelf software such as NI LabVIEW and modular cost-effective hardware, and sells to a broad base of more than 30,000 different companies worldwide, with no one customer representing more than 3 percent of revenue and no one industry representing more than 15 percent of revenue. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, NI has more than 5,000 employees and direct operations in more than 40 countries. For the past 10 years, FORTUNE magazine has named NI one of the 100 best companies to work for in America.

Sup Premvuti
Kirinson, Inc.
U.S. Official Technical Representative of Hokuyo Automatic Co., Ltd.
P:  360-607-6309

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