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AUSA 2021: Interest grows in sense-through-wall radar

13th October 2021 - 14:00 GMT | by Wilder Alejandro Sanchez in Washington DC

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POLR-1 sense-through-wall radar display as seen at AUSA 2021. (Photo: Wilder Alejandro Sanchez)

Radar technology has the capability to sense the presence of stationary or mobile adversaries concealed behind walls or other non-metallic structures.

The US subsidiary of the Czechoslovak Group (CSG) presented its Presence of Life Radar v.1 (POLR-1) system at the AUSA defence exhibition in Washington DC on 11-13 October.

A company representative from CSG USA explained to Shephard that there is growing interest from various defence and law enforcement agencies in systems to detect stationary or mobile targets behind walls or non-metallic barriers.

Similar systems have been developed elsewhere by companies such as Iceni Labs in the UK and Camero-Tech in Israel.

POLR-1 can be utilised in combat scenarios (such as urban warfare) to enable troops to see who is hiding behind barricades or other obstacles. CSG USA described interest from the UK MoD and New Zealand MoD, while the DoD is reportedly keen to provide funding to expand the capabilities of POLR-1.

POLR-1 has a range of 40m and provides 2D or 3D images to the operator, using ultra-wideband radio localisation technology to penetrate walls or other metallic barriers. The radar has a battery life of five hours and weighs 3.25 kg, including the battery.

The system displayed at AUSA had the radar connected to a laptop, but the representative explained that it can be linked to a small portable device as well.

POLR-1 has been in development since 2010, and between 2018 and 2021 it was certified by numerous US agencies. CSG USA explained that current users include state-level law enforcement agencies in the US, USSOCOM, the US Customs and Border Protection Agency, the Czech police, international law enforcement agencies, Thailand and Vietnam.

While the company representative did not disclose how many radars have been sold to these agencies, he did acknowledge that the Australian government has bought two units.

When asked about how much training is necessary to master POLR-1, CSG USA explained that learning the basic settings can be done in 45 minutes, while the more advanced options (interior mapping, locating hidden walls or determining line of distance) can be learned in 4-6h.

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