First experiments with an HB100 Doppler radar

I ordered two HB100 Doppler radar modules from China. They arrived and I took them down to the lab for a quick test. First off, the boards look nice. Good solder masks and silkscreens. On the surface they look of good construction and materials. Quickly soldered some leads to the 5V, Gnd, and IF connections. To these I applied my power and connected the IF lead to my scope. Powering up the unit appeared to work. It is always a good thing not to see smoke. Now I waved my hand in front on the unit and and did not see any response on the scope. Now I read the documentation I was able to scrounge and found that the signal would be a sin wave in the micro/millivolt region with a DC offset.

So I adjusted the scope for AC coupling, cranked the sensitivity up and waved my hand again. Success, but only just when the object is a few inches away from the sensor. The document talked about a range of 20 meters! So I gave up, and went upstairs to pout. Goggling I did find a reference that might indicate the sensor is not good in tight confines (like my lab). Next step if to take the rig outside.

Although this is a Doppler sensor and only reports speed of an approaching object, I still hope to use it for AVC obstacle avoidance. My hope is pinned on the fact that the amplitude of the sin wave output is inversely proportional to object range. With an appropriate comparator, I might be able to sound an alarm for objects closer than some panic distance.

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16 Responses to First experiments with an HB100 Doppler radar

  1. Michael says:

    I have one of these for the same purpose. Hope it works a bit better outside. Haven’t experimented with mine yet.

    • Skye Sweeney says:

      The documentation for these things is pretty awful. After an hour of Goggling I did find what passes as a datasheet and a user manual including a few circuit designs. The big take away is a significant amount of amplification is needed as well as some filtering. Hope to give it a shot this weekend.

  2. PAk says:

    Any progress with it? Cheers

    • Skye Sweeney says:

      As the summer winds down (where did it go?) I have less time. Right now I am getting the kids ready to go off to college. I hope to get back to this soon.

  3. GRicks says:
    have links to HB100_Microwave_Sensor_Module_Datasheet.pdf and HB100_Microwave_Sensor_Application_Note.pdf

  4. Andy says:

    As in the Documentation said you should use AC-Ampilifer-System … to Scale the Signal to whatever ..

    Here for example you can buy a hb100 with ampilifer .. scaling the output-signal to 0..5v … baseline is at 2.5v

    in their datasheet (with images) ( you can see how good that works 😉 …

    well i personally think .. buying a HB100 without having a OpAmp doesnt make sense cause you can’t sense long ranges … its like trying to receive a with a rod 😉

  5. Nazem says:

    You must remove 2 ESD protection jumpers (shortening antenna tracks to GND) before operation !!!!!!!!!!!
    See: Microwave Sensor _ Microwave Switch, HB100 China (Mainland) Sensors.htm

  6. Omkar A. Kaluste says:

    I am working on HB100 Module. When I connect the module in CW mode it work fine for some time but after some time the module heats up and it gets damaged. Can anyone help me with the circuit diagram so that I can use the module without damaging the module and also the circuit to amplify the IF frequency band of 0hz to 20khz

    • Skye Sweeney says:

      I have no idea why it might be heating up. Mine works fine for long periods of time. Have you checked all your connections? Are you sending it the right voltage?

  7. Stephan says:

    “My hope is pinned on the fact that the amplitude of the sin wave output is inversely proportional to object range”. This is not the case with this module, as it is only a CW radar. For range measurements, you need a modulated FM carrier radar, or CWFM. A CWFM radar gets an echo back where the frequency difference is proportional to the time difference and therefore the range to target. The reason you cannot do this with a CW radar is because the echo will include a doppler shift that depends on the speed of the target and you can’t separate one from the other. This module has a Dielectric Resonator Oscillator (DRO) so it is fairly complex to frequency modulate (FM) the carrier let alone using wide-band FM.

  8. khushbu says:

    is op amp circuit is necessary to use with HB100 , what if i want to use it for lights control using Resberri pi??
    i didnt buy i will soon..want to know about its experience who have used it.

    • Skye Sweeney says:

      If I remember correctly (it has been a few years) the output is in a range for a normal ADC. But if memory serves me, the RaspberryPi does not have a built in ADC. You would have to add an I2C part to provide this function. I would not pick this as my first sensor to integrate with a Pi.

  9. khushbu says:

    thank you for reply 🙂
    yeah i too studied about ADC microchips…actully ..i want to know more about sensor..can i increase its range???
    actully i m going to control AC load usign Rpi bt with sensor m confused with its range..i want to cover large area…hopely i will get great suggetion from you.

  10. Pictorobo says:

    Hey, Skye nice information of doopler radar, I can used with Ardunio uno.

  11. Ruchita says:

    Hi there!
    This is very nicely explained.Thanks for sharing this blog.

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