Using the Eclypse Z7 in Physical-layer Cyberattack Research

In twenty years, will we own an automobile, or will fleets of autonomous vehicles roam the streets waiting to be hailed? In the United States, over 30,000 people die on our streets, roads, and highways each year. In most cities, traffic jams are commonplace, and building new roads to help alleviate congestion is impossible. Frustrated drivers disobey laws, causing accidents and traffic tie-ups, not to mention drunk drivers. Self-driving cars promise to fix these. They do not experience frustration, cannot be hurried, and are sober. Traffic congestion is reduced because they can follow each other more closely, and intelligent roadways will help direct traffic and warn about road construction or closures.  

Achieving such benefits will require vehicles to interact with their surroundings and, to do so, will implement schemes like vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I). Many cars use radar for collision avoidance, blind spot warning, and cruise control to maintain a safe distance. Instead of burdening the cellular infrastructure, the radar band could be used for communication, too. Dual-function radar communication (DFRC) combines communications with radar ranging and obstacle detection. There are several methods to implement the communication using radar. However, the one that offers the most promise is orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM).  Instead of modulating a single frequency to encode data and transmit at a high rate, OFDM uses multiple frequency bands that are close together to send data within a single communication channel. Because adjacent frequency bands are orthogonal, the bands can be grouped closer than in simple frequency division multiplexing (FDM) to preserve bandwidth. Both use modulation techniques such as 16-QAM to squeeze as much data as possible into each frequency band. This system can be rather expensive. However, the following paper uses an Eclypse Z7 and Zmods from Digilent, a low-cost, off-the-shelf OFDM testbed that can be used for Cyberattack resilience research.  

You can find the research paper here: An FPGA Based 24GHz Radar Testbed for Physical-layer Cyberattack Research.pdf 


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