Global sensor manufacturer Sick has developed a tough radar sensor for collision avoidance applications in cranes operating in extreme weather or harsh industrial conditions.

It said the Sick RMS1000 Radar Sensor provides new levels of detection performance in challenging outdoor environments – such as for cranes in ports, container terminals and transport hubs.

Sick said it spent several years developing a new platform for anti-collision radar sensor technology and the RMS1000 is the latest release in this product family.

Adverse conditions

The company claims the system provides long-range resolution and distance accuracy in adverse conditions including heavy rain, thick fog, heavy snow and dusty environments.

“Collision avoidance is an important protection in ports and transport hubs, for example, on rail-mounted gantry cranes to avoid costly collisions or operating stoppages,” explains Neil Sandhu, national product manager for Sick UK. “The RMS1000 can detect a large object, such as a vehicle, up to 100m distance, and a human being up to around 50m. Its technology makes it really easy to set up and adapt to specific layouts on the ground.”

The RMS1000 uses 61GHz FMCW (Frequency Modulated Continuous Wave) technology to detect obstacles up to 100m away in up to four monitored areas simultaneously, as well as to determine distance and radial speed. According to Sick, the rugged and compact IP67/IP69-rated sensor can be easily fitted to offer more robust protection to existing operating machinery, as well as integrated into new machinery designs.

Adjustable Set-up

Adjustment of the sensor’s parameters is via Sick’s free-to-use SOPAS AIR software tool using a standard web browser. Users can set up to four configurable monitoring areas, as well as adjust the sensor’s 120° operating angle to adapt to the application. A large scanning range allows for detection angles of ± 60° (azimuth) and ± 4° (elevation).

To aid integration with a wide range of machinery the system has two digital inputs and four digital outputs, supporting, for example, external warning lights or audible alarms.

The RMS1000 can transmit raw data via both Ethernet TCP/IP and CAN J1939 protocols, enabling distance and radial speed measurements to be integrated in machine controls.


The RMS1000 has an aluminium housing and, because radar technology has no moving parts, it is highly robust to shocks and vibration, the company said. It is designed to work in extreme cold or high temperatures between -40°C to +65°C and it has a pressure-compensation diaphragm to protect against the effects of rapid changes of temperature, such as those caused by high-pressure, high-temperature, and cleaning jets at close range.  The sensor is waterproof to a depth of 1m, and corrosion-proof nickel-plated M12 plug connectors can be integrated.

Sick said the RMS1000 is a 1D radar sensor, the first in a roll-out of radar sensors on the same platform which will see 2D and 3D models launched in the near future. With low power requirements, the RMS1000 can be powered by solar panels, or batteries, and used day and night 365 days a year.

The radar sensor platform has been developed to complement Sick’s existing portfolios of LiDAR and ultrasonic technologies to enable the best technology to be selected according to price and performance for each application.