Magna un­veils high-res­o­lu­tion ICON RADAR

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Au­tomak­ers now have a radar op­tion that leapfrogs the com­pe­ti­tion as Magna un­veiled its ICON RADAR at the North Amer­i­can In­ter­na­tional Auto Show (NAIAS). Set­ting a new stan­dard in high-res­o­lu­tion au­to­mo­tive radar, ICON RADAR in­cor­po­rates ad­vanced tech­nol­ogy used by the US mil­i­tary to pro­vide pre­cise de­tec­tion, ex­ten­sive range and high re­siliency.

Magna has been col­lab­o­rat­ing with Uh­n­der, a tech­nol­ogy start-up cur­rently in stealth mode, in en­gi­neer­ing and prod­uct de­vel­op­ment to help bring this tech­nol­ogy to mar­ket in 2019. ICON RADAR helps close the gap be­tween level 3 and level 5 to reach full re­li­able au­tonomous driv­ing.

With a range of more than 300 me­ters, Magna’s ICON RADAR con­tin­u­ously scans the en­vi­ron­ment in four di­men­sions (dis­tance, height, depth and speed). The ad­vanced radar tech­nol­ogy can de­tect and track al­most 100 times more ob­jects than com­pet­i­tive sys­tems and in­di­vid­u­ally clas­si­fies them. It is able to de­tect and com­mu­ni­cate to the ve­hi­cle a rich to­pog­ra­phy of static ob­jects such as guard rails, road de­bris and speed bumps, as well as a large num­ber of tracked mov­ing ob­jects such as ve­hi­cles, bi­cy­clists, pedes­tri­ans and pets. Hav­ing the abil­ity to dis­tin­guish smaller “ob­jects” such as chil­dren and bi­cy­clists in close prox­im­ity to larger, more eas­ily de­tectable things such as parked cars and mov­ing trucks is crit­i­cal to the en­hance­ment of safety ADAS fea­tures such as Au­to­matic Emer­gency Brak­ing and to fur­ther the progress to­ward full au­tonomous driv­ing. It is this crit­i­cal data and ca­pa­bil­ity that keeps the soft­ware sys­tems with in­for­ma­tion to con­tin­u­ally im­prove ve­hi­cle in­tel­li­gence and safety sys­tems.

“Magna has iden­ti­fied some of the world’s most ad­vanced tech­nolo­gies and ‘auto-qual­i­fied’ them for use in the auto in­dus­try,” Swamy Ko­ta­giri, Magna Chief Tech­nol­ogy Of­fi­cer, said. “Our ICON RADAR takes the best of mil­i­tary tech­nol­ogy and im­proves on it for au­to­mo­tive use – tak­ing a sig­nif­i­cant step for­ward to­ward full au­ton­omy.”

Magna’s ICON RADAR con­tin­u­ously scans its full en­vi­ron­ment 50 times faster than the time it takes a hu­man to blink an eye, which helps a ve­hi­cle make in­stan­ta­neous de­ci­sions in re­sponse to com­plex sur­round­ings. It can de­tect ve­hi­cles at dis­tances that well ex­ceed any cur­rent re­quire­ments. Its state-ofthe art imag­ing ca­pa­bil­ity pulls from 192 vir­tual re­ceivers in­cor­po­rated into a sin­gle com­pact sys­tem. Th­ese vir­tual re­ceivers are ap­plied to de­liver both hor­i­zon­tal and ver­ti­cal res­o­lu­tion, achiev­ing new bench­mark lev­els for each. In ad­di­tion, the tech­nol­ogy is naturally tol­er­ant to in­ter­fer­ence, which will be­come crit­i­cal as the num­ber of radar-enhanced ve­hi­cles on the road in­creases.

With its com­pact size, ICON RADAR also al­lows greater flex­i­bil­ity in ex­te­rior de­sign and can be eas­ily in­te­grated into an au­tomaker’s au­tonomous sys­tem or as part of Magna’s MAX4 au­tonomous ve­hi­cle plat­form.

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