indie Semiconductor, an Autotech solutions provider, has announced it has acquired Silicon Radar GmbH, a German-based specialist in advanced, highly integrated, high-frequency system-on-chips (SoCs) for automotive radar applications.
“Radar is a fundamental sensor modality for ADAS and automotive safety applications,” said Donald McClymont, indie’s co-founder and CEO. “The growing number of radars per vehicle require high-performance and highly integrated semiconductors capable of supporting ever higher frequency of operation with the lowest power consumption while supporting the ever-increasing demand for resolution in both external and in-cabin radar systems. indie’s acquisition of Silicon Radar furthers our technology leadership in automotive radar applications, particularly with the industry’s first production-ready 120 GHz solution and immediately extends our capabilities with the addition of a world class design team in Europe.”
As the radar industry moves to 120 GHz (in-cabin sensing) and 140 GHz (external sensing), these higher frequencies allow the use of antenna-on-chip techniques, significantly raising the integration levels, and enabling indie to create products with a complete radar on a chip, opening up significant new market areas. In particular, operation at 120 GHz or above allows antennas to be integrated in package or on-die, thus vastly simplifying the PCB design and dramatically reducing cost especially in in-cabin Occupant Monitoring Systems, or OMS, where industrial design often cannot allow external antennas optimized for RF performance at lower frequencies.
According to IHS, 138 million radar Electronic Control Units, or ECUs, will ship in 2023, supporting short-, medium- and long-range applications including interior monitoring, blind side detection, park assist and automatic emergency braking. By 2028, the market is expected to more than double to 293 million units, creating a $6 billion opportunity for radar semiconductors.
Founded in 2006 and based in Frankfurt an der Oder, Germany, Silicon Radar specializes in the semiconductor design of 60 GHz, 120 GHz and 140 GHz high-frequency circuits for radar, sensor and wireless communications. With an innovative team of 14 expert mixed-signal SoC and system designers, Silicon Radar has developed 10 radar-related patents and has previously worked closely with indie in co-developing radar solutions for emerging radar applications, including 120 GHz and 140 GHz frequencies.
As this acquisition supports indie’s radar research and development staffing plan, the financial impact is expected to be neutral to previously forecasted investment levels.