This paper presents two novel X-band MMICs which constitute a complete FMCW radar front-end solution. The chips have been designed by the SIRC company and have been manufactured at the IHP research institute. The aim of the developed MMICs was to minimize the size as well as the power consumption of the end-devices. To verify the design not only the MMICs has been manufactured and individually measured but also two proof-of-concept miniature FMCW radar sensors has been developed. The first of the two experimental radars is a sensor with two fully coherent RX channels allowing for a precise target angle measurement in a single plane by utilizing the monopulse technique. The second radar sensor is a major enhancement of the original design while retaining its small size of only 80x100 mm. The number of the RX channels has been increased to 4 which allows full determination of the target spatial location via the two-plane monopulse method. The microcontroller onboard the sensor has also been substantially upgraded to a model capable of executing advanced DSP operations at real-time thus eliminating the need for external computing machine. The measurement results of both the MMICs themselves as well as the proof-of-concept radar sensors built upon them fully matched the theoretical calculations thus ultimately verifying the design goals with positive outcome.
|ESA Technical Officer||Dr. Václav Valenta|