Products > Radar Solutions

Millimeter Wave FMCW radar for Foreign Object Debris (FOD) Detection


See more: Download ELVA-1 FOD radar presentation (zipped PowerPoint, 1.5 MB).

Foreign Object Debris (FOD) DetectionThe history of aviation knows many cases in which debris objects on runway caused sufficient damage to the aircraft during take off or landing. Due to the relatively small size of FOD debris, a high resolution radar is required to find and locate such objects. 

ELVA-1 FOD radar operates at 76 GHz (3.9 mm wavelength) in frequency-modulated continuous-wave (FMCW) mode. FMCW radar determines distance to the target (FOD object) by detecting the frequency difference between the received and emitted radar signals. 

The advantage of ELVA-1 FMCV radar is very low transpired power which doesn’t harm airport personnel or people inside aircrafts when getting into beam. Another pros of ELVA-1 radar are market-winning range distance, motorized radar positioner with 180-degree search area, and relatively small size of the radar.

FOD Radar Features 

FOD ELVA-1 FOD 76 GHz radar is intended for 24/7/365 all-weather search for debris at airport runway with the following features:

1x FOD radar for 2000 m runway 

ELVA-1 FOD radar is long-range device with 1000 m radius of operation. On the market, this range is one of the longest, allow to use 1 to 3 FOD radars for runway.

1x FOD radar for runway at regional airports o A runway of at least 1,829 m in length is usually adequate for aircraft weights below approximately 90 tons as Airbus 319, Airbus 320-100 or Boeing 737-800.

2x FOD radars for 4000 m runway 2x or 3x FOD radars for runway at any international airportso World’s most busy airports like Frankfurt or Singapore have runways of 4000 m length to land Boeing 747 or Airbus 380. Thus, 2x FOD radars will be required for each runway.

The world's longest runways are ones at Qamdo Bamda Airport in China (5,500 m) and Zhukovsky Airport, Moscow (5,400 m). In such cases, 3x FOD radars will be required, similarly. 

FOD Radar Schematics 

FOD Radar SchematicsFOD radar provides raw binary data, so it has to be connected via Ethernet network to airport control / monitoring system for data processing andvisualization. The structure of each FOD radar (also named as mm-sensor) consists of FMCW radar and Positioner (rotation device).

Interface Converter consists of Ethernet switch and connects:


FOD Radar Delivery Kit includes 

  1. 2x 76 GHz FMCW radar modules (Tx и Rx) in IP-67 cases with sealed cable  for DC power and Ethernet
  2. 2x antennas with radomes
  3. 1x Positioner (rotation device) with electric motors and control electronics
  4. Detailed description of radar raw data specification, intended for external computerized control system. 
  5. Radar Operation  Manual in PDF.

Additional software for radar output data conversion can be developed by ELVA-1 team according to customer requirements.



Radar Transceiver

 Detection Range

 1.2 to 1000 m

 Distance Sensor resolution

 0.3 m

 Main reflector diameter size

 600 mm


 Two antennas, separately for Tx and Rx

 Antenna type

 Cassegrain, symmetrical

 Protection radome included


 Output polarization


 Antenna gain with radome

 50 dB

 Beam width at 3dB level

 0.4 deg

 Transmitter emission power

 300 mW

 Noise figure of receiver

 4 dB (max)

 Operating frequency       

 76-77 GHz

 Operation mode


 Sweep Range

 500 MHz

 FM Sweep Linearity

 99.99 %

 Sweep time

 1,0 - 10,0 ms (programmable)

 Sampling rate

 8192 points per sweep

 Data resolution

 14 bits

Radar Positioner 

 Max. pan rotation

 180 degrees

 Max. tilt rotation

 -5 to 80 degrees

 Angle resolution Azimuth / Elevation

 0.1 / 0.2 degrees


 +/- 0.1 deg

 Speed ranges, max

 Pan: 24 deg /s, Tilt: 12 deg/s

 Allowable antenna wind load

 150 km/h

 Software provides complete scan of runway

 2 times 160 deg azimuth scan with 0.4 deg elevation shift within 3 min

Radar Interface





 Transfer data

 Position of radar + FFT, 4096 points@16 bits

 Communication connector


Power supply and environmental conditions

 Case protection


 Power supply voltage

 18 – 36 V DC, optionally 110/220V AC

 Power consumption

 500 W

 Ambient temperature

 -30 to +50 °C

 Atmospheric pressure

 84.0 to 106.7 kPa (630 to 800 mmhg)

 Relative humidity at 35°С and lower, no more than

 95 %


Scan Diagram for FOD Radar

Radar scans runway within 180-degree from its point automatically adjusting beam elevation angle to keep it over runway surface. Radar realizes loop-like scan by ½ of runway width along its length.

Radar scans runway within 180-degree from its point


 FOD radar automatically adjusts beam elevation angle to keep it over runway surface