The latest report from Yole Developmentpment shows that since 2022, the automotive radar market has shown a very strong growth rate. The total market size is expected to grow from 1.8 billion USD in 2022 to 3 billion USD in 2025, or even more, with a compound annual growth rate up to 18%-20%.
What update vehicle-mounted millimeter-wave radar systems have made?
The transformation of millimeter-wave radar technology from the previous SiGe to RFCMOS, and the accelerated transition from 24GHz sensors to 77GHz sensors, are the main reasons for the continuous reduction in cost and rapid deployment of millimeter-wave radar.
The data shows that thanks to the continuous improvement of the MMIC chip process, the cost of the vehicle-mounted millimeter-wave radar system has continued to drop to 30% of the corresponding cost of the first-generation process.
L2+/L3 level autonomous driving is currently the most attractive market segment. It is estimated that by 2030, 40%-50% of the world’s vehicles will have L2+ to L3 level autonomous driving capabilities. If L1/L2 is taken into account, these three segments (L1, L2, L2+/L3) will account for more than 90% of the total market size.
What makes automotive radar market shows strong growth?
The reason for the rapid development of the radar market is summarized as a “triple acceleration” effect. First, more and more vehicles will be equipped with radar. Second, there will be more radar nodes in each vehicle, which not only includes forward radar, but also requires more Multi-angle radar for 360-degree perception. Third is “more semiconductor devices.” The superposition of all factors will bring unprecedented market opportunities to the radar market.
The new car crash test (NCAP) in various regions mandates that cars be equipped with advanced driver assistance system functions in order to obtain a safety star rating, which directly leads to the continuous increase in the rate of millimeter-wave radar and ushers in a high growth rate. Taking the Chinese market as an example, in the CNCAP-2021 released in August 2021, the proportion of active safety scores has increased from 15% to 25%, and the requirements for BSD and AEB to identify two-wheeled vehicles during the day have been added, and AEB requirements for pedestrian identification at night.
Related policies are issued and determined that from March 1, 2022, applications for the approval of radio transmission equipment for automotive radar in the 24.25-26.65GHz frequency band will no longer be accepted and approved, and 76-79GHz is determined as the frequency used by automotive radar, to further standardize the market.
From the perspective of application scenarios, the L1 level currently needs to implement adaptive cruise control (ACC) or automatic emergency braking (AEB) functions. Such a system is usually equipped with a combination of forward long-distance radar and camera, and the blind spot in the backward function Detection (BSD), Lane Change Assist (LCA) and other functions require 2 rear corner radars.
At the L2 level, it is usually necessary to install two additional front-angle radars to realize forward crossing warning, AEB with steering, automatic parking and other functions, and realize 360-degree vehicle together with several cameras (≥4) look around.
At the level above L2+/L3, the number of cameras (6-8) and radar sensors (5-10) will further increase, and the requirements for sensor performance will also increase significantly. For example, at L1 and L2 levels, forward radar only needs to have the ability to distinguish vehicles or pedestrians, while at L3+ level, higher performance radar products including 4D imaging radar are required.
NXP : Single chip millimeter wave radar will dominate the market
Torsten Lehmann, Executive Vice President and General Manager, RF Processing Business Unit, NXP Semiconductors, said that after 2025, single-chip millimeter-wave radar is expected to dominate the corner radar market. Moreover, for single-chip radar, considering performance, process and integration, the most suitable node is 28nm.
NXP officially announced the launch of 28nm RFCMOS radar single chip SAF85xx. The biggest highlight of this solution is that it is the first to provide short-range, medium-range, and long-range three-in-one concurrent multi-mode radar sensing, which can realize simultaneous sensing of a wide field of view around the car. To achieve this goal, NXP utilizes an innovative architecture to improve the performance of the original sensor hardware by configuring low-complexity sensors to achieve 192 virtual antenna channels.
Lehmann emphasized, “All NXP products have a common architecture, and IP, systems, and software all support multiplexing. For customers, whether they develop angle radar, forward radar or imaging radar, they can achieve a high degree of synergy. “