Surround sensing platform targets motorbikes and scooters

August 10, 2021 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Surround sensing platform targets motorbikes and scooters
Piaggio Fast Forward (PFF), a Boston-based robotics company, has developed sensor technology that can be used in scooters and motorbikes to significantly improve rider safety.

At the core of the sensor technology is a radar sensor module that will initially be used in motorbikes and scooters manufactured by the Piaggio Group. According to PFF, this is the first radar-based 4D safety platform for motorbikes. The PFF engineers have also created a catchy name for the system: the Advanced Rider Assistance Systems (ARAS) they call the platform in reference to the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) rooted in automotive technology.

The radar module itself comes from Vayyar Imaging; PFF developed a sensor package around it with the corresponding hardware and software. The PFF modules use Vayyar's mmWave 4D Imaging radar-on-chip (RoC) sensor, which enables multiple ARAS functions such as Blind Spot Detection (BSD), Lane Change Assist (LCA) and Forward Collision Warning (FCW) with a single sensor and provides a range of over 100 m, combined with an extremely wide field of view. Vayyar's 4D radar technology supports a large multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) array that enables ultra-high resolution point cloud imaging for holistic environmental monitoring.

A key component of the sensor is 4D imaging radar technology, which provides an extremely wide field of view (in both azimuth and elevation) with no dead zones and detects and tracks multiple targets. The signal processing is summarised in a single-chip design implemented with a very small form factor.

"PFF develops advanced technology products for powered two-wheelers and robots that detect objects in their environment. They provide the information we need for mapping, object recognition and control, regardless of light, weather and other environmental factors," explained Greg Lynn, CEO of Piaggio Fast Forward.

Ilan Hayat, Director of Business Development at Vayyar Imaging, sees the development of the sensor system as a major step forward in reducing the risk of accidents involving motorcyclists. "Motorcyclists are among the most vulnerable road users," Hayat explained. "Regardless of the type of vehicle, rider safety cannot be compromised. We

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