Radar Systems – little all-rounders on the road


© Fraunhofer IZM / Volker Mai

Flexible sensor platform for radar modules.

Radar Systems are used in many places and for many purposes: as parking assistance, motion sensors, or to help driverless cars monitor their surroundings. In order to satisfy the various demands on a radar system in a cost-efficient manner, Fraunhofer IZM is researching innovative packaging technologies for radar systems.

One typical application of radar systems is autonomous driving – here, a great deal of information needs to be processed. The limited data transfer capacity of a car's onboard network increases the response time – a disqualification when it comes to the day-to-day usability of self-driving vehicles. That is why the scientists are working on a sensor module with a decentralized signal processing unit and short response times. A sensor fusion between high-end camera systems and a 79 GHz radar system ensures that the information is captured securely and in full. The radar sensor determines vehicle spacing and speed, while the camera simultaneously performs classification tasks and evaluates all the information.

The researchers are also developing integrated high-frequency modules such as a flexible radar sensor that fits in the palm of your hand and can be deployed in a variety of applications: from human detection to finding a parking lot.