Software Defined Radars with the Resolution of Lidar

Radar has achieved a near universal take-up rate in today’s passenger cars to enable ADAS features, but still struggles to achieve the range and resolution needed for even modest levels of autonomy such as highway automated-driving. Moreover, the traditional design paradigm of adding more channels to improve performance is breaking down as imaging radars with 100s or even 1000s of channels hit practical limits in size, cost, and power. The way past this bottleneck is to realize that the key driver of radar performance is not the number of channels, but rather the coherent aperture that can be formed. Here we introduce Distributed Aperture Radar (DAR) technology which involves composing a large aperture out of standard, simple building blocks. We will show how the DAR technique is the only way to achieve azimuth resolutions of 0.2 degrees or better, which is necessary and sufficient to solve various critical scenarios which involve separating closely spaced objects such as humans, cars, and guardrails at distances of 200m and beyond.