November 1, 2021
China’s Calterah Semiconductor has announced two new mmWave radar chip product families, the Alps-Mini and Rhine-Mini. The chips are expected to help mmWave radar to break into new applications, including autonomous driving, smart cabin, security and surveillance, as well as smart homes and cities.
A Mini IC integrates an FMCW radar RF front-end transceiver system, which includes a dual-channel transmitter and a dual-channel receiver, capable of operating in the 59-64 GHz (for Rhine-Mini) or the 76-81 GHz (for Alps-Mini) frequency band, with a 4 GHz continuous sweep and an output power of up to 12 dBm. Calterah said the chip also supports a maximum ADC sampling rate of 25 MS/s, peak search, and several algorithms to implement CFAR detection with a 512 KiB baseband SRAM. For automotive applications, the chips meet requirements of the AEC-Q100 qualification and ISO 26262 ASIL-B standard, with two packages available (standard or antenna-in-package).
While resembling the Alps and Rhine models in the high-performance RF front-end, auto-grade operating temperature, reliability and proprietary radar signal processing hardware accelerator, Mini is upgraded with a dual-core processor and a cybersecurity unit for encryption and compliance with desired cybersecurity standards. In addition, compared to Alps and Rhine, the Mini is 40% smaller in size, with a typical power consumption of 0.8 W and over 20% of the main chip cost reduction. The company said the ICs have been made smaller, safer, smarter and more power efficient as the market requires.
Calterah said examples of mmWave chips can be. used for smart home fall detection, as well as in-cabin monitoring.
Calterah said the company has hit the milestone of 1 million accumulated IC unit shipments, with a growing partnership of more than 400 customers from industrial, automotive and consumer markets. At its product launch, Calterah demonstrated in-cabin occupancy detection, as well as indoor human detection enabled by Mini, signifying the use of mmWave radar in elderly care and smart home markets in the future.
For more details on the chips, visit the Calterah website here.