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Industry News

Focus on EuRAD and an Overview of the Radar Market

October 5, 2007
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Now in its 4th year EuRAD presents a selection of peer reviewed technical papers as well as focused sessions with invited papers on highly relevant technical topics. From 110 submitted papers the TPC has put together a conference programme of excellent quality and general interest. A total of 18 sessions, including two invited sessions and four joint sessions, which are organised in cooperation with the European Microwave Conference, will give a wide overview of the most recent advances in the radar field.


The conference programme consists of 65 oral presentations and 17 poster papers. Contributions have been received from authors from around the world, covering a wide range of topics from broadband radar, sophisticated radar signal and data processing, including STAP to SAR interferometry and imaging, both from a scientific as well as from an application related perspective.

A special attraction is focused sessions, which are on the topics of millimetre-wave imaging, communication by radar, broadband radar and short-range automotive sensing. Also, five invited papers on subjects of current interest will be highlights of the opening and closing sessions.

The complete EuRAD Conference Session Timetable can be viewed at: www.eumweek.com/pdf/Sessions_Matrix.pdf

Technology Perspective

Jürgen Detlefsen’s overview of European radar development

The European Radar Conference began in 2004. Since then it has established itself towards the top of the hierarchy of international radar conferences and as such offers an insight into the breadth and depth of current developments in the field of radar and a barometer of the most recent advances. Within the context of European Microwave Week, EuRAD is particularly useful for evaluating the latest developments within the context of all the other activities in the microwave community.

Looking at this year’s conference, it is no surprise to discover that common trends such as UWB, MIMO, and Dual Use are impacting on the world of radar applications. They demonstrate, together with the ability to take advantage of low cost microwave components and to design low power, solid-state radar sensors, the convergence of communications techniques and technologies and radar. On a system level this trend is emphasized within the conference by a focussed session on Communication by Radar.

The conference contributions reflect the current trends and activities within the industry and cover a wide range of topics, mentioned in the Focus on EuRAD above. The origin of contributions demonstrates a thriving European radar community, with contributions from the Newly Independent States being particularly significant.

At the high frequency end of the spectrum there is increasing interest in exploiting mm-wave frequencies from 60 GHz upwards, helped by significant progress in the high frequency behaviour of deep sub-micron Silicon-on-insulator technologies. The development and adoption of automotive radar systems at 77 GHz are impacting on the high-end automotive sector. It is of key strategic importance to Europe’s economy and there is continuing interest in automotive radar systems. The aim is to provide further driver assistance functions which are capable of reducing road injuries and fatalities.

A rapidly growing area of research and development is related to imaging for security, using active and passive millimetre-wave techniques. The efforts of the European Union within the Seventh Framework Programme, which devotes a complete topic to security, will also advance the application of radar sensors. Increasing the security of citizens, of infrastructures and utilities, realising intelligent surveillance and enhancing border security are fields where radar can be successfully applied. Even at much higher frequencies, there are intriguing signs in Europe that the application of terahertz technologies is beginning to open up new markets and opportunities.

Also, concern about the environment has led to significant research into radar remote sensing of the atmosphere from space, airborne and land-based platforms. An important milestone was the launch of TerraSAR-X in June 2007, a new German high resolution radar satellite with an X-band SAR sensor that can be operated in different modes (resolutions) and polarizations. The mission objective is the provision of high quality, multi-mode X-band SAR data for scientific and commercial applications. A future extension will be the TanDEM-X mission, which will comprise two fully active SAR satellites operating in X-band. The primary goal of this mission is the derivation of a high precision global Digital Elevation Model (DEM).

With the launch of TerraSAR-X, 2 SAR-Lupe satellites, Cosmo-Skymed by the Italian Space Agency and the start of the development of Sentinel-1 by the European Space Agency, Europe is entering into a new era with several high-resolution SAR satellites and therefore expanding its leading role in the technologies and applications of radar remote sensing for earth observation.

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