Goal Ref, originally a research project at the ISIS Katrinebjerg in Denmark and subsequently further developed and commercialized by the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits (Erlangen, Germany), made it to FIFA's shortlist. It is a radio-based sensing system that deploys low-frequency magnetic fields to detect if a goal has been scored. Its proponents stress there are many opportunities for the technology down the line.
It is claimed to be lot cheaper to install and operate than either GoalControl or Hawk-Eye and thus, in the longer term, should be more suitable in the lower echelons of the game.
Thomas Pellkofer, Operations Manager for GoalRef at Fraunhofer IIS told EE Times the group is confident the system will be chosen by other national football associations and maybe even by FIFA for future events.
He said the compact system can be installed easily to football pitches of any size and any location, and all that is needed is a power source. Receiving antennas are attached to the goal frame (see image) and a processing units is located behind the goal or perimeter boards.
In operation, one field is generated in the goal area, the other created in and around the ball when it approaches the goal. The ball has coils embedded in three dimensions between the outer layer and the inflatable center. The interaction between the two magnetic fields is measured and analyzed, using techniques developed by the Fraunhofer researchers and, as with the other systems, wirelessly transmitted to the referee's watch where the result whether the entire ball has crossed the line is displayed, along with a vibrating alert. Pellkofer stressed sophisticated encryption technologies guarantee the message cannot be accessed by anyone else.