Digital Radar for Convergence of Sensing and Communications

Automotive radars, first introduced in the 1990s, continue to play a critical role in Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). Currently, over 100 million radars are manufactured annually. It is anticipated that by 2027, up to 5 radars will be installed in a vehicle. Resolution, range-Doppler ambiguity, interference, and dynamic range are the challenges that need to be addressed for higher levels of automotive safety and autonomous driving. Digital radar is emerging as a solution to this problem. Recent advances in mm-wave and sub-THz integrated circuits, high-speed data converters, and advanced packaging technologies are enabling implementation of low-cost 4D radars in a small form factor. Digital radars, employing advanced modulation schemes such orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM), achieve the convergence of sensing and communication leveraging hardware technologies from 5G and 6G. In this talk, we will present recent advances in the digital radar technologies. We then discuss the centralized architecture for sensor data processing and seamless 360-degree coverage of the vehicle. Finally, we will present an analysis of system-level and operational aspects in real-life radio environments.