Powering up Hokuyo UTM-30LX or UTM-30LX-EW and viewing the Laser Scan

Hokuyo UTM-30LX and Hokuyo UTM-30LX-EW are used in many robotic and mapping and other Laser Scanning applications including area monitoring.

One of the most interesting application is the mapping application used by robots and also for Geomatics. When considering mapping for robotic projects we have to consider the localization as well and here the term callled SLAM or simultaneous Location and Mapping comes in.

Here I would try to explain how the UTM-30LX can be used for SLAM. I am going to use the Hector_SLAM approach. So lets get started.

The very first thing is to have any of the Hokuyo series LiDARs. We will consider the UTM-30LX. This particular LiDAR takes 12v with plus minus 10% and 1A. The easieset way to power it up is by uising a computer power supply which can be bought for about $40. The yellow wire gives out the 12v and the black is Ground or 0V. So we will connect the brown or 12v from the UTM to 12v Yellow of the power supply and the blue from the lidar connecot to the black of the power supply connector.

You can attach the two female connecotrs using the male-male premium wire. Before turning on the power please do confirm the out voltage from the power supply that it is definitly 12v. You can do that with a multimeter. When you connect the power supply with the 110v you will note that nothing hapens as the power supply has a on off switch mehcanism. The easiest way to on th epower supply is to short the green and the black cables in the 24 pin molex connector coming out of the power supply.

Once the hopy is powered up there are several way to view the data. FOr the Hector Slam we used the ROS hector Slam package. a nice tutorial can be viewed here:


Once done with all the steps you should be able to view the UTM-30L data on your screen using ROS, and Hector SLAM package.