Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


App Improves the Safety of Blind Pedestrians in Cities


Siemens is developing a system that helps blind and visually impaired people walk safely through cities.

In cooperation with the Technical University of Braunschweig and several partners, Siemens is working on a comprehensive assistance system for visually impaired people. The system is the result of a research project titled InMoBS. Among other things, the solution relies on the data transmitted between the traffic infrastructure and blind people's mobile devices.

Critical situations occur at intersections, for example. Although walk signals usually emit a beeping sound to inform visually impaired people, but they don't know how long the light is green or where exactly it is safe to walk. To provide such information, Siemens enabled smartphones for its car2x technology, which is used to transmit data between cars and traffic infrastructures.

For their walks, many blind people are already using barrier-free smartphone apps that let them navigate through cities with the help of GPS data and digital maps. The InMoBS project uses this technology for its assistance system. which provides its users with an online route planner that they can use at home to find the most barrier-free route to their destinations. The smartphone app emits vibration signals or verbally guides users along this route.

Traffic lights send their information to smartphones

Siemens has been working on technologies and standards for the communication between vehicles (car2car) and between vehicles and traffic infrastructure systems such as traffic lights and signs (car2x) for a number of years. The information is exchanged to improve the flow of traffic. As an example, a car's engine would only shut off automatically if the vehicle is notified that a traffic light would remain red for a certain amount of time.

This communication can also prevent traffic jams and accidents by having a car warn the vehicles behind it of bad road conditions, for example. Researchers at Siemens' global research department Corporate Technology are currently developing software and communications modules known as road side units for the wireless transmission of data between vehicles and traffic infrastructures.

As part of the InMoBS project, the researchers modified the communications software so that the light signal systems transmits their data via the WLAN standard commonly used for smartphones. Moreover, the information transmitted to smartphones is different to that for drivers. To ensure that all users can safely cross streets, for example, the app only emits a signal at the start of a "walk" phase. The infrastructure also transmits the intersection's layout to the app so that the user knows in which direction he or she has to cross the street.

The project partners recently unveiled a prototype of the assistant in Braunschweig. To create the assistant, the partners were able to use infrastructures that were installed in the city for the intelligent mobility application platform (AIM).

Press Pictures:

Weitere Informationen:

Dr. Norbert Aschenbrenner | Siemens InnovationNews

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>