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I wonder is there any simple (can be computed in microcontroller level) option which is suitable for 3d object perception (depth, position, pose or coordinate estimation) of flying robots except LIDAR, stereovision, omnidirectional camera, laser scanner or any other machine vision based techniques

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    $\begingroup$ You could use SONAR or RADAR technologies but the processing power required for any acceptable resolution is prohibitive, there's a reason the technologies you've excluded are most commonly used - they're the cheapest/easiest to implement. $\endgroup$ – Scott Downey Apr 14 '15 at 9:41
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks. Excluded techniques have good results but if we want to make swarm robot applications this methods brings software and hardware costs. I just wonder is there any cheap alternative. $\endgroup$ – acs Apr 15 '15 at 12:14
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The best answer is probably going to be an ultrasonic sensor on a servo, you can get them in a huge range of values, from very close to very far range depending on your application, and varying beam widths depending on your accuracy needs. If you need more than 255 steps you could go with a motor and a encoder but that will be slightly more complex.

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