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Anyone DIY a heater for the front radar?

Discussion in 'Technical' started by Murph85, Dec 10, 2017.

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  1. Murph85

    Murph85 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2014
    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Maryland, USA
    As we all know the 'new' bumper shields the front radar better from snow, however it can still build up over the radar. Has anyone added a heater to the front to prevent this for long roadtrips?

    I was thinking about it and I don't think it would be super difficult. Obviously a metal plate would be counter productive, however if it was a mesh was < 1/10th of the wavelength of the radar it shouldn't be a faradaycage, however I am not sure how much of an impact it would have. Just some quick math. 77Ghz = 3.8mm wavelength, and a quick search shows for a faradaycage 1/10 to 1/20th of the wavelength is required, so it looks like you'd have to have a pretty fine mesh for it to completely block the radar.

    Idea #1, wirewound silicone mat
    Silicone Rubber Heater, wire wound, 5" x 5", 125 watts, 120v, 5 w/sq. in, 8" leads
    Pros: super easy, just need to glue it to the bumper in front of the radar
    Cons: might degrade the radar

    Idea #2, IR heater
    5 inch Infrared Strip Heater, 500W
    Pros: won't mess with the radar
    Cons: way too expensive

    Idea #3, long heated strip along the top of othe bumper
    Pros: not in the way of radar
    Cons: it would only work if the melted snow above the radar was enough to come down and melt the snow building up in front of the radar.

    Idea #4, duct in warm air to heat the bumper from behind
    Pros: no interferance
    Cons: more complicated, will probably use a lot of power (compaired to just the headed pad)

    Has anyone already solved this problem? Does anyone know about a type of heated pad that is RF transparent? I see some pads that use kapton, however it looks like that is just the material used around metal wires.
     
  2. lunitiks

    lunitiks Cool James & Black Teacher

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    2,698
    Location:
    Prawn Island, VC
    Checked clearance between radar and bumper?
     
  3. arnis

    arnis Member

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    Apr 13, 2015
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    Location:
    Estonia
    MASSIVE!
    Ideas 1 and 2 are unappropriate. We need 12V heating element. Something like 10-30W. Not 125 nor 500:D:D

    I think there are heating elements that do not act as faraday cage. Something not metallic. Maybe carbon based.
     
    • Like x 1
  4. Murph85

    Murph85 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2014
    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Maryland, USA
    I saw that there are some plastics that conduct heat like this: https://www.celanese.com/coolpoly I was also thinking that even something that doesn't mess with the radar much it might mess up a calibration built into the sensor.

    i looked at the clearance and since it is so large the heated pad would have to be pretty big. I am liking the IR leds projecting light forward, i need to do some more research trying to find some good hardware and see if I can just 3d print a bracket. However I am not sure what the power requirements will be.
     
  5. outdoors

    outdoors Always roaming

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2014
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    Location:
    off grid till Xmas
    Elon tweet-

    Long-term, the Tesla car will work purely on vision, with radar just a plus, but maybe worth adding a radar heater anyway-tweet
     

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