How 4D radar could impact autonomous vehicles

The main differentiator of radar is that it uses radio waves instead of a laser to sense objects. This gives radar the ability to measure velocities of surrounding objects directly, offering a critical advantage in the automotive environment. LiDAR systems would need to rely on a very complex analysis to achieve the same outcome. In addition, when radar waves travel through the air, less power is lost compared to the light waves, meaning radar can work over longer distances. Radar has also already been in use for years for powerful military purposes in airplanes and battleships.

Radar maintains functionality across all weather and lighting conditions. However, the technology has traditionally been limited by low resolution, a disadvantage that made radar susceptible to false alarms and unable to identify stationary objects. Until now, that is. The technology has evolved into high resolution capabilities in recent years.