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ARIA Report Summary

Project ID: 781027

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ARIA (Advanced ultra-wideband Radar for Integrated Applications)

Reporting period: 2017-08-01 to 2017-11-30

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

ARIA is a highly innovative state-of-the-art security sensor designed by Cover Sistemi, it is the next generation of perimeter security systems which will allow for a complete and fail proof use of technologies with capabilities that were previously unheard of. It was designed to fulfil the needs of the security market, and has the potential to disrupt it thanks to its ground-breaking features.
The security market in which ARIA is positioned, and more precisely the sensors’ market, is growing mainly because of the rise of global terrorism that has created an urgency to adequately prevent incidences. When compounded with favorable government regulations, and the need for cost reductions, the market is demanding new and better performing technology. ARIA is able to satisfy all these imperatives by offering more capabilities in one device that will be able to be integrated into existing systems, allowing security providers to seamlessly offer a better performing solution as we respond to today’s challenges faced by this industry.
The current offerings for security sensors have limitations that lead to false alarms, expensive or simply underperforming solutions. What Cover Sistemi has done is design ARIA so it enables security systems to be much more reliable and cost efficient, while offering a product with capabilities that makes it dependable and adaptable in almost all environments, mitigating the drawbacks that occur in normal use and circumstances. The features that we developed allow our system to function reliably regardless of weather and climatic conditions, or whether there is line of sight.
With the launch ARIA, we anticipate the creation of minimum 18 new jobs, a cumulative revenue of over €14 million with a ROI of 2.60 over 5 years, and a payback of under 4 years. As for the commercialization, we will focus on Italy first, and work towards gaining a foothold in Europe (Germany, France, Benelux, UK), before exporting ARIA to the North American market.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

Objective 1: Gauge the remaining electronics, software and integration developments to finalize the ARIA radar technology (move from TRL6 to TRL9). Key findings: We have designed, created and developed the necessary components for the production of ARIA, and the prototype for testing will be finalized in March/April of 2018.This includes the Ultra-Wideband (UWB) antennas, advanced BiCMOS node single chip UWB transceiver with microDSP and power unit. Work is also ongoing for improvements to the software for the use and customization of our device by our clients.

Objective 2: Confirm the improvements to the multi-core microDSP architecture for optimized performance of each receiver. Key Findings: We have tested the various components that have been created until now, and all evaluations have confirmed that they function as they were intended to. Once the final components will be ready, the prototype will be finalized and further testing will be done to identify all improvements that will be required, and to confirm that it does indeed function as designed.

Objective 3: Compile the operational specifications, standards compliance and future production costs. Key findings: ARIA has been developed within the bounds of the regulatory bodies, both in Europe and the USA. The functional specifications of the radar technology used in ARIA has been designed as to be able to be used without issues in regards to regulatory compliance. As for future production costs, and extensive evaluation has been done to gauge the production costs.

Objective 4: Risk assessment for all technical activities to identify areas of concern and define proper mitigation and contingency measures. Key findings: We have conducted an in-depth risk assessment to evaluate which factors are liable to challenge the production and commercialization of ARIA. With each of these risks, we have worked to identify how to mitigate each one in a credible and realistic way, so as to try to anticipate the challenges we might face in the development of this project.

Objective 5: To prepare a detailed work plan for the Phase 2. Key findings: we have defined that the ARIA project will take 20 months and will be distributed in 7 work plans.

Objective 6: To do an extensive market research on UWB radar devices and their target applications, and to assess the current market for security solutions. Key findings: As part of the feasibility study, we have researched the security market, and the sensor the market, to evaluate what type of product is needed. We have concluded that there is an increasing need for new technology that offer better performing and more reliable sensors that consume less power, with increased capabilities in communication, and all at lower costs. These advancements are dictated by the end-users who have set these expectations for the industry, which is growing in part due to the global terrorist threat that has affected Europe and North America.

Objective 7: Confirm our Freedom-to-Operate (FTO) and patent analysis and strategy in target markets: Key findings: We have researched and evaluated the technology that is on the market, and we have found no impediment to proceed with our project. We have found that, although there are similar products, none use the technology that Cover Sistemi has designed for ARIA. Furthermore, we have established a strategy in order to commercialize ARIA, with a roll-out in Italy first to our known clients, and then to other clients (Value Added Resellers, Original Equipment Manufacturers, Dealers and Security Solution companies).

Objective 8: Consolidation and search for partner(s) to engage in a Fabless manufacturing process. Key Findings: We have been in discussion with design silicon foundry partners (AMS AG and STM electronics) for the production of ARIA’s single-chip. We are looking for a partner that will conduct the proper monitoring for failure events in the scribe lines

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Our ambition for ARIA is to successfully disrupt the current security sensor market with our device and gain a foothold on this market for our products. As stated previously, ARIA offers ground-breaking features that no other security sensor can attain, and with those capabilities we hope to become a reference for state-of-the-art sensors.
The first iteration of ARIA came in the form of the LT1 and LT2 devices which confirmed our design, but were too expensive for marketability. We have therefore undertaken this project to create a product that will satisfy the demand and the requirements that current users expect. We feel that we are in line with market expectations, not only in regards to fulfilling a clearly identified need for better devices, but also making it affordable and therefore accessible. Our ARIA Single-Chip device is a new generation of security sensors that will mitigate the limitations of previous generations.
The current sensors on the market have limitations, they are prone to false alarms, they can be expensive or underperforming, and are impacted by environmental and climatic factors. The global terrorist threat has created an increasing need for sensors that can overcome these challenges that can build trust with the users and be adaptable to various conditions and environments. When compounded with the expected growth of this market from $6 billion in 2016 to $12 billion by 2023, ARIA is well positioned for disruption. The identified needs are low power consumption, cost reduction, increased reliability and increased security in communication, and new technology is the main driver for these needs. Our system is able to
1) Detect people or objects whether stationary or slow/fast moving
2) Differentiate humans and animals
3) It is unaffected by environmental changes and factors
4) Does not require line of sight, and can therefore be placed in discreet places for better effectiveness
5) Has the capability to cover a selected area for detection.
All these features are included in one single and unique device, which is unheard of in the current security solution market. These capabilities will allow for varied uses of the ARIA system, and as mentioned above, the ability to limit the coverage area enables users to protect people working close to machinery as it is functioning with moving parts, by simply setting ARIA to detect around and on the sides of the machinery, furthering its cost effectiveness because there will be no need for human involvement in this type of security scenario.
ARIA has also been involved in tests for structural health monitoring of materials because of its capability to “see through” solid objects. It can be used for the evaluation of deterioration of steel rebar in reinforced concrete. This spin-off market adds another dimension to ARIA and its uses.
Our product is truly unique in its features and adaptability, as it has been specifically designed to be inexpensive and easily integrated into other security systems. ARIA has the potential to disrupt and help redefine the future of security sensors, enabling its users to be fully confident in its reliability and capabilities, therefore allowing ARIA to be used in various scenarios.

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