A millimeter-wave, multi-zone radar system developed by DENSO Corp. promises to make the newest versions of the Mazda6 automobile safer without a penalty in higher vehicle costs. The radar system is significantly lower in cost due to an improved material selection and also is approximately the same size as the company's previous model. The millimeter-wave radar provides a longer and wider detection range than earlier systems, and is available as a factory option on the Mazda6 launched late last year by Mazda. Automotive radar systems typically operate within the 77-GHz band.
Ron Schubert, Director of Body Control Systems at DENSO International America, Inc., notes: “For enhanced performance, in addition to the longer detection range, the radar's wider detection area improves the systems response in lane-intrusion situations. The wider radar detection is especially important in the United States where we are a nation of multiple lane highways.” The new radar system has a detection distance of 205 m and detection radius of ±18 deg. within 35 m of the vehicle. This is a significant improvement over early automotive radar models which offered a detection distance of 151 m and detection radius of ±10 deg.