RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)
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Author:  admin [ Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:01 pm ]
Post subject:  RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)


This module has been designed as an alternative to the PIR motion detectors commonly used in burglar alarms. Instead of sensing changes in infrared radio emitted by a moving person this sensor uses a microwave Doppler radar to detect moving objects. It has a sensitivity range of ~7 meters. When triggered its trigger output pin will switch from (LOW) 0V to high (3.3V) for ~ 2 to 3 seconds before returning to its idle LOW state.



Product code: HCSENS0040
Supply Voltage: 5V dc
Supply Current: >3mA (2.8mA typical)
Operating frequency: ~3.2GHz
Transmit power: 20mW (typical) / 30mW (max)
Size: 36mm x 17mm


Component side should face detection area for maximum sensitivity
Do not place metal objects within 1cm of antenna
Trigger out - HIGH (3.3V) motion / LOW no motion
3.3V output is for reference only - do not use to power other devices.
Device operates at ~3.2GHz/20 - 30mW. In some countries it may be illegal to operate this device.


3V3..........Regulated output (reference only)
GND.........Ground / 0V supply input
OUT..........Trigger: HIGH (3.3V) motion detected / LOW (0V) idle
VIN.......... 5V-12V supply input
CDS..........Sensor disable input (pull low to disable)



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Author:  formosafox [ Tue May 30, 2017 2:22 am ]
Post subject:  Re: RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)


need Fritzing parts file
thanks !

Author:  andrew [ Wed May 31, 2017 9:08 am ]
Post subject:  Re: RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)

I don't know if there is a Fritzing part in existence for this module but I'm afraid we don't possess one. Although the image looks a little like a Fritzing part is actually just one of our own drawings.

Author:  barewires [ Sun Jul 09, 2017 5:35 am ]
Post subject:  Re: RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)

Hooked up the cat detector to a PiZeroW running Node-RED and it emails me when my neighbours cat is sneaking in my window. A short message is also sent by Twitter.

C: I bleeding got one, look! What's that then?
S: This is a dog license with the word 'dog' crossed out and 'cat' written
in in crayon.
C: The man didn't have the right form.
S: What man?
C: The man from the cat detector van.
S: The looney detector van, you mean.
C: Look, it's people like you what cause unrest.
S: What cat detector van?
C: The cat detector van from the Ministry of Housinge.
S: Housinge?
C: It was spelt like that on the van (I'm very observant!). I never seen so
many bleeding aerials. The man said that their equipment could pinpoint
a purr at four hundred yards! And Eric, being such a happy cat, was a
piece of cake.

Author:  barewires [ Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)

CAT5 should now be renamed USB5. Verified the cat detector by illuminating the beast with a 3.3 volt 10mm Blue LED from a 3.3 volt out hence not needing a dropping resistor. The device LED was then taped into my peephole (on my front door) and detects all motion, me, neighbours in their flats, anybody through the door.

Author:  barewires [ Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:55 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)

Cat5 just chewed my wiring from the Cat Detector! You may ask why only one wire on the GPIO: the RCWL-0516 (green) is connected to a USB 5v power header (red) and the OUT wire is the signal to GPIO Pin 7 and with a 3.3 v 10mm LED directly connected to GND. OUT is current limited and I have tested the entire spectrum of LED (IR-UV) with no current limiting resistor needed.
is the best source of information and I have submitted my results in the issues.

Author:  barewires [ Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:11 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: RCWL-0516 Microwave Radar Motion Detector (HCSENS0040)

The screenshot is node-RED running on a PiZeroW (with WIFI) that is set up in my open side window about 2 m sideways from my desk. The link is made through Firefox from a Pi3 on my desk (or other browsers - but avoid chromium as it constantly crashes, even midori is better) by The Zero has UFW, Universal FireWall running so it was setup using:
sudo apt-get -y install ufw && sudo ufw allow 1880 && sudo ufw allow 22 && sudo ufw enable && sudo ufw status.

The first cat detector is a stock RCWL-0516 and the second has a 1 meg R-GN resistor-gain added which is supposed to reduce the effective range from 7 to 5 metres. Rotsa-Ruck. The 2nd was even installed in a steel fidget container with a plastic window, both pointing sideways to capture cat5 but they still both watch me mousing and typing.

The intent was to email and tweet (within constrained time limits) and record all activity, on and off in local log files.
This is remotely connected by: ssh pi@

pi@PiZeroW:~ $ cat southwindow2ndRadarPlusResistorOct18 | tail
Wed Oct 18 2017 18:51:21 GMT+0100 (BST)
1 one 2nd radar
Wed Oct 18 2017 18:51:31 GMT+0100 (BST)
1 one 2nd radar
Wed Oct 18 2017 18:51:41 GMT+0100 (BST)
0 zero 2nd radar
Wed Oct 18 2017 18:51:51 GMT+0100 (BST)
0 zero 2nd radar
Wed Oct 18 2017 18:52:01 GMT+0100 (BST)
1 one 2nd radar

As you can see it is watching me with reduced feedback and in the can. arrrgh! Luxury! There is so much data that the reduced amplification in the can still shows about half the clean module sees.

The other Pi0W in my hallway even sees activity outside my door and I suspect sees my next-door neighbour. My neighbour upstairs was spooked by the device when she went away for 4 days as I showed her the plastic box with a powerbank, Pi0W and RCWL-0516 left on a shelf in her flat (apartment). Even though she thought that people were coming in and moving her stuff, she didn't like a little plastic box watching her place and proving that she was crazy. :roll:

The time and date function was the hardest to get working, seemed inconsistent, it converts UNIX time in seconds since Jan 1 1970 to real time and date. Limits of 10 sec and 10 minutes for emails reduce the overload of data that google and twitter sees. Here tweets and emails have their wires snipped.

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