What Is Ka-Band Radar Used For?
Radio detection and ranging (RADAR) is usually employed in various systems for detecting target range, motion, direction, and velocity.
Ka-band radar is hard to detect, as three different frequencies–33.8GHz, 34.7GHz, and 35.5GHz–are in use.
In speed detection, Ka-band radars are used so that the driver can’t make sudden speed changes by sensing the signal using lower-quality detectors.
In police radar applications, the frequency of Ka-band radar is usually limited between 33.04 GHz and 36 GHz.
The proliferation of radar in remote sensing, healthcare, and security systems has encouraged cutting-edge developments in radar technology. Contact and remote radar systems are employed in monitoring and sensing applications.
Regardless of the radar type, electromagnetic waves are transmitted by radars. From the radio waves reflected by an object, the radar system detects the target and computes its velocity or future location.
The radio waves utilized in radar vary depending on the application. A few radar bands in the electromagnetic spectrum are S, C, X, Ku, K, and Ka. Ka-band radars are often used in weather forecasting, civil security systems, airborne systems, and the law enforcement sector.
Let’s learn more about Ka-band radar.
The Basics of Radar
Radio detection and ranging (RADAR) is usually employed in various systems for detecting target range, motion, direction, and velocity. Since World War II, radars have evolved tremendously. The composition of radar systems changed from analog to mostly digital. Recent radar systems are now using the most advanced digital signal processing systems.
The basic principle of a radar system is based on the transmission of electromagnetic waves and their reception after reflection from the target object. The radar system detects these reflected electromagnetic waves and tracks the target range, velocity, and position of the object based on them.
Radar Frequency Band Selection
Both commercial and military applications use radar. The electromagnetic spectrum band utilized in radar changes depending on the application requirements. In civilian applications such as automotive traffic enforcement, air traffic control, and mapping of ground contours, radar systems do not need to be quite as alert and foolproof. Military applications are a different story–those radar systems need to be exact and extremely reliable. The frequency band chosen determines the alertness, security, and range of the radar system.
Radar frequency band choice also determines the size of the antenna. For airborne applications requiring minimum antenna size, high-frequency or low-wavelength radio waves are preferred. The beamwidth or ability of the radar to focus the radiated and received energy in a narrow region is tighter with a higher frequency. The choice of frequency also influences the range of the radar.
Ka-Band Radar Applications
Ka-band radar is widely used in law enforcement as well as non-law enforcement applications. The peculiarity of Ka-band radar is that it is hard to detect, and this is the main advantage of using it in police radar. The reduced size of the antenna and other components associated with Ka-band radar systems expand its application into systems with space constraints.
Let’s take a closer look at two main applications of Ka-band radar.
Ka-band frequency boasts advantages such as wide bandwidth, short wavelength, and high resolution. The reduced size of the antenna, focused power, and frequency reuse makes this radar well-suited for use in law-enforcement radar.
The Ka-band electromagnetic frequency spectrum ranges from 26.5GHz to 40GHz. In law enforcement or police radar applications, the frequency of Ka-band radar is usually limited between 33.04 GHz and 36 GHz. Ka-band radars are hard to detect, as three different frequencies–33.8 GHz, 34.7 GHz, and 35.5 GHz–are in use. These Ka-band frequencies are usually not sensed by lower-quality radar detectors.
In speed detection, Ka-band radar is used so that the driver can’t make sudden speed changes by sensing the signal using low-quality detectors. However, high-end radar detectors can detect Ka-band signals. False alerts caused by Ka-band radar are very rare.
Microwave Imaging Radar Systems
Microwave imaging provides a target image at a long range under any time or weather conditions. The microwave imaging technique helps extract the characteristics of the target. To achieve high-resolution microwave images in air-based or space-born applications, increasing bandwidth is a solution. Utilizing Ka-band ultra-wideband microwave photonic radar is effective for obtaining high-resolution microwave images.
Cadence’s suite of design and analysis tools can assist you in developing Ka-band frequency radars. Leading electronics providers rely on Cadence products to optimize power, space, and energy needs for a wide variety of market applications. If you’re looking to learn more about our innovative solutions, talk to our team of experts or subscribe to our YouTube channel.