Pololu Distance Sensor with Pulse Width Output, 300cm Max

Pololu Distance Sensor with Pulse Width Output, 300cm Max


This small lidar-based distance sensor reports the distance of objects up to about 300 cm (120″) away with a pulsed signal similar to a hobby servo control signal. A digital microcontroller pin can be used to time the length of each high pulse, which encodes the measured distance. The sensor works over an input voltage range of 3.0 V to 5.5 V, and the 0.1″ pin spacing makes it easy to use with standard solderless breadboards and 0.1″ perfboards.

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This compact sensor makes it possible to measure the distance of objects up to about 300 cm (120″) away using a simple digital pulse width interface (similar to a hobby servo control signal). It uses a short-range lidar module to precisely measure how long it takes for emitted pulses of infrared, eye-safe laser light to reach the nearest object and be reflected back, allowing for 2 mm resolution. As long as the sensor is enabled, it takes continuous distance measurements and encodes the ranges as the widths of high pulses, which can then be timed by a microcontroller using a single digital input.

The maximum detection range depends on object reflectivity and ambient lighting conditions. In our tests, the sensor was able to reliably detect a wall out to around 300 cm away, a white sheet of paper out to around 170 cm, and a hand out to around 100 cm.


  • Operating voltage: 3.0 V to 5.5 V
  • Current consumption: 30 mA (typical) when enabled, 0.4 mA when disabled
  • Maximum range: approximately 300 cm (120″) (for high-reflectivity targets in good ambient conditions; lower-reflectivity targets or poor ambient conditions will reduce the maximum detection range)
  • Minimum range: 4 cm (for accurate measurement); < 1 mm (for detection)
  • Update rate: 30 Hz to 33 Hz (33 ms to 30 ms period)
  • Field of view (FOV): 15° typical; can vary with object reflectance and ambient conditions
  • Output type: digital pulse width
  • Dimensions: 0.85″ × 0.35″ × 0.136″ (21.6 × 8.9 × 3.5 mm);
  • Weight: 0.014 oz (0.4 g)


Size: 0.85″ × 0.35″ × 0.136″
Weight: 0.4 g

General specifications:

Resolution: 2 mm
Maximum range: 300 cm
Sampling rate: 30 Hz
Minimum operating voltage: 3.0 V
Maximum operating voltage: 5.5 V
Supply current: 30 mA
Output type: digital pulse width

Specific References

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