Joint Millimeter-Wave Radar and Communications Testbed

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Joint Millimeter-Wave Radar and Communications Testbed

Millimeter-wave joint vehicular communication and radar would allow intelligent transportation systems to simultaneously reap the benefits of autonomously sensing the driving environment (via radar) and cooperatively exchanging information among vehicles (via communication). It will have significant advantages in terms of cost, size, performance (high communication data rate and estimation accuracy of radar parameters) and spectrum usage. To establish the proof-of-concept that the systems can be combined together in real-world settings, we are working on building a flexible and extensible mmWave joint radar and communication testbed. This is crucial because joint mmWave communication/radar is in its infancy.

Detailed Testbed Description

We are developing a single input-single output (SISO) millimeter wave (mmWave) software-defined prototype using National Instruments (NI) that can support 1 GHz of bandwidth. The baseband processing in the reference design is performed in two PXI express chassis (NI PXIe-1085). The block diagram of each one of the chassis in SISO configuration is shown in the figure. Each PXI express chassis have 18-slots, which houses multiple FPGAs or different adapter modules required for a fully functional baseband transmit and receive system with a symbol rate of 750 MHz. The FPGA modules provide real-time processing capability will be essential in collecting measurement data in real traffic and estimating radar parameters in low latency. The analog-to-digital converter (ADC) adapter module is a 8-bit resolution ADC with 3 GS/s sampling and digital-to-analog converter (DAC) is a 14-bit resolution DAC with 1.25 GS/s. The mmWave prototype also supports loop-back mode with no antennas.

This research is partially supported by the U.S. Department of Transportation through the Data-Supported Transportation Operations and Planning (D-STOP) Tier 1 University Transportation Center and by the Texas Department of Transportation under Project 0-6877 entitled Communications and Radar-Supported Transportation Operations and Planning (CAR-STOP) and by a gift from National Instruments.

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