Shader Based Radar Simulation

Hi all,

I’m now trying to simulate a shader based imaging radar in a simulator for drones and cars (AirSim). In AirSim, the onboard perception sensors mainly are a camera actor with a few scene capture component with the post processing material being applied to get the final results (segmentation, depth…). And we would like to follow this flow to make the radar.
The current method I get from some radar simulation expert to do it in the fragment phase is as follows:

  1. get the segmentation map, depth, normals from built-in camera component
  2. build meshes for seperate object in segmentation map
  3. computer radar response for each mesh using depth and normals
  4. store the radar response value(brightness) to 3D mesh at range-angle position, so at( azimuth, elevation, depth )
  5. do orthographic transformation to get the final 2D radar image.

I’m very new to unreal engine and I really have no idea how I could implement these steps in the a post processing material.
It would be super appreciated if anyone could help me! Thank you very much in advance.:cool:


Wow, that sounds quite involved for only a material. Not that it’s impossible, but a blueprint might help in constructing the final result. Try looking up a few of the basics of normals and depth, and also projecting from 3D to 2D, all in the material editor…such as functions and nodes that do those things. Even a comprehensive set of instructions on how to exactly do the whole thing would be too difficult for you to reproduce and understand from the get-go. I don’t think anyone in the forum is going to be capable of shooting the instruction set in a reply or two though. That’s basically asking them to do the work for you, and for free.

@presto423 thanks for your suggestion. Actually to me it’s more like I don’t know which point I should cut in to implement these steps, e.g. should I write custom shader node, or these steps can actually be done just through the editor.
I will reconsider how I state a question on the forum next time.

I thought you were probably looking for a jumping-off point, and not the entire solution given in a thread reply. I was saying that more to illustrate how I think it requires some research, specifically for each step. You’re fine in how it was written. So it’s a visual radar response system? kinda like a jet’s altitude / velocity / angular climb meter in a flight simulator? so it’s displaying as bright lines within the HUD showing the different parameters?

There’s a free radar system in the free content this month in the Marketplace. It might have some of the essential features that parallel a radar response system in the materials and blueprints.

@presto423 Thank you! That’s exactly what I am looking for. I also agree with you that I need to dig more into each single segments and see how they should be carry out. The radar is actually a imaging radar, which can be understanded as a lower resolution image with radar responses, which can , as attached. And yes we want to show it later on a HUD and collect the point cloud and fetch them with the api.
Could you please point out where exactly the free content about radar? I didn’t find any using the keywords “radar”.

Imaging radar: Imaging radar - Wikipedia
Similar results in the end:

Whoops, sorry. I remembered incorrectly. The free content is a targeting system for games. I know I saw a video tutorial on YouTube for creating a radar minimap. Try searching on YouTube for ‘radar material’, ‘imaging radar’, ‘HUD radar’ all adding the term “UE” or “in UE”…perhaps vary it to other, similar terms to radar.

In the Marketplace, there’s a free Point Cloud download. And I’ve seen, not watched, how-to videos on YouTube. There might be at least a few on Vimeo or another video site too for how to use point cloud data in UE. There’s also videos on YouTube for how to import GoogleMaps or other GIS-related data (topographic and such) to UE if it’s applicable.