I would like to talk about the use of Slamtec RPLIDAR A2M8 in an autonomous robot that we built as a part of our Capstone Project at the University of Waterloo. RPLIDAR is a 2D laser scanner by Slamtec. It is very compact and well designed for mobile robotic applications.
Here is a video of unboxing of the Lidar:
It talks about the features of the Lidar as well.
The LIDAR was used in our robot as the range sensor for Autonomous Navigation. We used it to map the environment and localize in the environment. Initially the LIDAR was mounted on a turtlebot before it was put on our robot. Here is a video of the LIDAR mapping when mounted on the turtlebot:
When mounted on our robot, the LIDAR worked out of the box without any problems. All the software - SDK, Firmware, ROS Packages are provided by SLAMTEC, which makes it extremely easy to bring it up and running. If using ROS, the only thing one needs to be careful about is to set up the transform tree correctly for mapping or localization to work properly.
Here is a final video of our robot on which the LIDAR was used:
Find out more about this robot at trymist.com/blog
I would highly recommend the LIDAR. Its extremely easy to use, comes with all necessary support software, and works well without any issues.