German megasupplier Continental and the San Jose, Calif., chip company Xilinx are working together to bring 4D imaging radar to production to support new-generation driver-assist systems and autonomous-driving vehicles.
The partners are not yet discussing when or on which vehicles the technology will appear on the market. But the collaboration illustrates the new marriage between hardware advancements and the electronics that enable it.
The 4D imaging radar will take vehicle radar to a new level. Existing 2D radar can measure the speed and horizontal angle of an object — input that is adequate to detect where an object is in a vehicle's path and which way it is moving. But 4D technology can also gauge its relative speed, range and elevation. That will enable a vehicle to determine the height of a highway overpass, for example.
A 4D system also will provide vehicles with information about objects on the road ahead from a greater distance. The companies say that by incorporating Xilinx's 16-nanometer system-on-chip technology, Continental's high-resolution radar sensor vision can be precise at 300 meters.
The partners say the 4D radar supports Level 2 to Level 5 vehicle?automation and will have a wider field of view that helps in navigating complex driving situations.
Willard Tu, senior director of automotive at Xilinx, said deploying the technology in passenger vehicles will help accelerate the adoption of autonomous driving. "The combination of Continental's heritage in radar and Xilinx's legacy in adaptable silicon," he said in a statement, "make this a very powerful offering."