This paper presents an omnidirectional RGB-D (RGB + Distance fusion) sensor prototype using an actuated LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) and an RGB camera. Besides the sensor, a novel mapping strategy is developed considering sensor scanning characteristics. The sensor can gather RGB and 3D data from any direction by toppling in 90 degrees a laser scan sensor and rotating it about its central axis. The mapping strategy is based on two environment maps, a local map for instantaneous perception, and a global map for perception memory. The 2D local map represents the surface in front of the robot and may contain RGB data, allowing environment reconstruction and human detection, similar to a sliding window that moves with a robot and stores surface data.
Keywords: LIDAR; RGB-D sensor; deep-learning; mapping; mobile robots; omnidirectional.