The Limited and SHO models of the 2010 Ford Taurus, which reached showrooms in July, feature an optional collision-warning system that has the first electronically scanned radar system to be built into a car. Manufactured by Delphi, the radar constantly switches between two fields of view: one that extends through 90° out to a distance of 60 meters (good for detecting objects coming in from the side, such as pedestrians) and one that extend across 20° out to a distance of 174 meters (for detecting targets directly in the vehicle’s path). Previous automotive radar systems used multiple beams or required mechanical switching to achieve two fields of view, but the Delphi radar uses an antenna array, which relies on constructive and destructive interference of radio waves to shape the beam.
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