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Fraunhofer-Institut Autonome Intelligente Systeme

Knowledge computing and autonomous robots are the two core areas of research of Fraunhofer Institute for Autonomous Intelligent Systems AIS. With its activities Fraunhofer AIS is vigorously contributing to the development of a sustained knowledge society, with pre-competitive research in the field of IT leading to application-oriented concepts and individual solutions for industrial, scientific and governmental clients.

Founded as an institute of GMD Forschungszentrum Informationstechnik GmbH (GMD Research Center Information Technology) in 1999 by Prof. Dr. Thomas Christaller, the AIS has meanwhile become an institute of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. In April 2002 Prof. Dr. Stefan Wrobel joined the head of AIS as its institute director. He is responsible for the Knowledge Computing part of the institute

In order to accomplish excellent research results, Fraunhofer AIS favors interdisciplinary and international cooperation. Research teams comprising computer scientists, neurobiologists, mathematicians, sociologists and geographers elaborate new scientific findings across the individual disciplines’ boundaries.

Fraunhofer AIS is fostering a variety of national and international cooperative relationships. Fraunhofer AIS is a member of the Fraunhofer Group Information and Communication Technology. Furthermore, Fraunhofer AIS is cooperating with universities from the region, particularly with the University of Bonn and the Technical University Bonn-Rhein-Sieg. Prof. Christaller is director of the GMD-Japan Research Laboratory in Kitakyushu, and he is also directing the Steinbeis Transfer Center IT Systems at Fraunhofer AIS.

Current research topics of Fraunhofer AIS are:

  • transforming data into knowledge: search for hidden interrelations in large data inventories by means of data mining and visualization; the best approaches from data mining and geographical information systems are being put together in the SPIN! project.

  • transforming knowledge into models: microsimulation and modeling; methods resulting from the City Traffic project allow improved traffic control and traffic jam warnings in cities and communities.

  • communicating knowledge and making decisions: computer-supported mediation in order to, for example, facilitate citizens’ participation procedures for city and regional planning by means of the Zeno system.

  • understanding and utilizing autonomy: learning from nature, e.g. by engineering biomimetic robots, i.e. complex walking robots which for example search for persons suspected under the rubble after earthquake disasters.

  • engineering autonomous systems: mobile robots as reliable helpers and partners of humans, in order to, for example, inspect communal sewage systems independent of direct human control.

  • conveying engineering know-how: stirring up interest in technical/technological issues, for example by employing robots in everyday vocational education and training so that individuals of any age and with any previous knowledge may systematically, practically and playfully acquire engineering knowledge.
    understanding the relations between technical and social systems:
  • IT has the potential to vividly and understandably make transparent complex interrelations, thereby providing possibilities to better assess longterm impacts and side effects of social and economic processes and decisions. Project GLOBALEX


Fraunhofer-Institut Autonome Intelligente Systeme
Schloss Birlingshoven
53754 Sankt Augustin
Tel: +49 (0)2241 14-2756/2678
Fax: +49 (0)2241 14-2384

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