Date of Award


Document Type



Santa Clara : Santa Clara University, 2018.


Computer Engineering; Electrical Engineering

First Advisor

Angela Musurlian

Second Advisor

Sally Wood


While working on a robotics project at the electrical contracting company for which we work, we discovered a gap in the electronic distance sensor market in terms of range, accuracy, precision, and cost. We designed and constructed a prototype for an electronic distance sensing component which utilizes a camera, laser, and image processor to measure distances. The laser is pointed at a surface and an image of the laser dot is captured. An image processing algorithm determines the pixel position of the dot in the image, and this position is compared to a lookup table of known values to determine the distance to the dot.

In measuring our prototype’s performance, we found that it was capable of measuring distances up to 5 meters with greater than 90% accuracy. We also discuss some possible ways to improve the viability of the technology, including ways to improve the refresh rate as well as the reliability.