Baumer strives to be leading in sensor technology. This means our customers have access to new trends in sensing technologies. We work together with customers, universities, and partners to demonstrate capabilities of and put to use emerging technologies.
Radar Technology – Miniaturized Radar Sensors
A new class of radar sensors will become available that have the potential to complement ultrasonic sensors. These radar sensors may be used for defined targets for positioning tasks and also for distance measurement on natural targets for e.g. boom height or implement control. Radar waves are less susceptible to environmental influences, and experience little damping in air at short distances. First field tests with this new developments confirmed good canopy penetration.
Recent advances in the SiGe BiCMOS process allow for operating frequencies well beyond 100GHz in mm bands and sub THz frequency ranges. Possible applications include wireless multi Gbps data communication, automotive radar and active and passive imaging systems for e.g. aircraft navigation under clouds, fog and dust conditions. Transceivers and antennas can now be fully integrated onto a single chip in standard semiconductor processes. This, and an active and fast adaption especially in the automotive industry, will result in the availability of miniature devices in the near future that will complement existing technologies such as ultrasonic sensors.
Radar devices in small packages in the mm band have advantageous beam propagation properties. Beam forming by a dielectric lens allows for a simple field of view and gain tailoring. At a field of view of less than +/-10° a linearity error of better than +/-6mm can be achieved. These properties compare well to e.g. ultrasonic sensors. Especially in the agriculture equipment environment ultrasonic sensors are extensively used due to their robustness and resistivity to dirt.