Smart Bus

Smart Bus

Ongoing

Abstract

The climate change as a global challenge for our planet fosters the international community to look for ways to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gases. Urban areas try to make their ecological footprint smaller. Regarding urban transport planning the main priority is to reduce cities’ car- dependency and give priority to public transport. The purpose of this project is to create a web-based geographic information system (GIS), a “smart-bus” application product that could improve feeder bus service around regional train stations and make this service more reliable, quick, cheap and comfortable for its users. The aim of the product is to improve public transport effectiveness and create an attractive car use alternative. The new application will allow the adaptation of feeder buses to regional train operation, even in cases of delays, to eliminate waiting times of passengers when changing mode, from train to bus and vice versa. Another advantage for passengers with the new application is the adaptation of the bus routes to their needs. Between the given alternative routes, the bus through this application will be able to choose those which minimize the total travel time of its passengers taking also into account the walking time between the bus stop and their final destination. This service is expected to encourage the combined use of buses and regional trains with benefits to the economy and the environment. It shall be noted that such a product can have an impact in the world market. This service application will be developed by an academic institution, namely the National Technical University of Athens (School of Rural and Surveying Engineering), two private companies, AMCO and AETHON and one regional public bus operator, Korinthos KTEL. The University will focus on the characteristics of the new bus service and explore – through qualitative and quantitative social research methods- all the relevant attributes to increase the quality of the service. The two private companies will use the research results to develop the software and build marketing strategies in order to support the take-up of the new application. The bus operator will run the pilot project to test the new application. The pilot project will be implemented in the area of Korinthos in Peloponnese Region, in Greece. Two neighboring cities; Korinthos and Loutraki, which form a unified polycentric urban territory will be the testbed of the application. This area is served by a regional train, connecting Korinthos with the metropolitan area of Athens. The area presents several research advantages in terms of its current car-dependency and is ideal for showcasing the benefits of the application. The future creation of a new railway link to connect Korinthos and Loutraki will add new opportunities for the combined operation train – bus in a larger area. The new feeder bus service will offer a new reliable, cheap and fast combined transport solution for the regional train. It will bring new customers and generate higher revenue for Korinthos KTEL. The improved bus service will also foster economic activity in the area and will reduce environmental impact of transportation in Korinthos. The successful implementation of the new GIS software in the pilot area is expected to allow for its expansion in Greece and abroad and thus contribute to the global effort to increase the modal share of public transport.

Role of AETHON

AETHON will have an active role in the project due to its specialisation in developing and implementing innovative ideas and solutions for transport. AETHON will contribute to the analysis and design of the operating system and the development of the software.

Partners

Project Information

Duration: 17/6/2021 έως 16/12/2023 (30 μήνες)

Budget: €878,288.00

Cargo Bikes and Drones

Cargo bikes and Drones

Ongoing

Abstract

The proposed project refers to a first phase of importing drone and cargo bike into freight transport to meet some distinct needs, either in terms of transport speed or protection of some protected, sensitive environmental parts of the city. It is almost certain that at a later stage, when their technology has evolved, drone and cargo bike will be used to meet more conventional transportation needs because they will be able to carry more weight and thus serve more concentrated missions. Then, the transit centers will be the first intermediate destination in the transport chain until the final recipient. Conversely, in the first phase of light, therefore more personalized transport, small take-off / landing bases could operate, where the transfer between drone and cargo bike would take place. These bases will be on line with the transit center. The project aims to:

(a) investigate issues arising from the use of drones and bicycles in freight transport in urban places with various urban and traffic characteristics,

(b) produce a model that calculates cost, energy consumption and travel times using these means of transport per kilometer under different conditions,

(c) create a software that will include data on the location of take-off / landing points, sender and receiver addresses and landline characteristics.

Role of AETHON

AETHON will have a significant role in the technical tasks of the project due to its specialization in the design and implementation of innovative solutions aimed at modernising and improving transport services. AETHON will explore the circumstances under which freight transport with drones and cargo bikes is feasible and will contribute to the design and development of the platform.

Partners

Project Information

Duration: 17/6/2021 έως 16/12/2023 (30 months)

Budget: €932,818.00

MobiDataLab

MobiDataLab

Ongoing

Abstract

The overall objective of MobiDataLab is to propose to the mobility stakeholders (transport organising authorities, operators, industry, innovators) a replicable methodology and sustainable tools that foster the development of a data sharing culture in Europe and beyond. MobiDataLab is based on a continuous co-development of knowledge and of technical solutions for data sharing with high involvement of all data producers and consumers in the transport and mobility landscape. This will be put in action through problem-solving oriented Labs, the collection and analysis of advice and recommendations of experts and supporting cities/regions/clusters/associations aided by the incremental construction of a cross-thematic knowledge base and of a cloud-based service platform, which will federate access and usage of data sharing resources.

MobiDataLab leverages on the legal, technological and economic opportunities to:

  • present mobility data providers with recommendations on how to improve the quality, accessibility and usability of their data – how to describe them, how to store them safely and securely, how to make them available, easy to find, and understandable;
  • encourage the reuse of these data and foster users’ trust in the data, contributing to the development and promotion of open tools to the community of innovators;
  • bring together mobility stakeholders (both data providers and data consumers) to find innovative solutions to concrete problems, using open data as a tool.

The MobiDataLab consortium is formed by 10 partners from Industry, Research, Academia, Consultancy and Governance sectors, located in 7 countries. The consortium shares a common view on the values and benefits of open data and open source principles for fostering independence and uptake by communities. The MobiDataLab yet young-and-emerging group of supporting parties allows to consider replicability of approach and results in many more countries, including beyond EU

Role of AETHON

AETHON will have a significant role in the technical tasks due to its specialization in the transport field and data analysis. AETHON will explore the actor’s needs and the cooperation framework and will create and execute the Living and Virtual Labs in order to collect data regarding the data sharing culture and the impact and efficiency of the project.

Partners

Project Information

Duration: 1/2/2021 to 31/1/2024 (36 months)

Budget: €2,999,305.00

Project link: http://www.mobidatalab.eu/

EFFICIOUS

EFFICIOUS

Ongoing

Abstract

The project’s goal is to create an online platform, that will connect the companies (through their representatives) that want to exchange not useful products, or unused equipment or even services. This platform will also provide the opportunity to recycle or even donate to charity or other organizations. In this way, the platform will try to tackle the problem of unused resources and unused equipment of companies and especially in the construction field.

The project will analyze and describe the needs of the market and the users, and the architectural design of the platform (the modules, requirements and functionalities of EFFICIOUS). At the same time, a smart algorithm will be developed in order to match demand and supply. Then the implementation of the platform will be initialized, the corresponding database will be created, and the interface will be configured. Finally, a pilot will be carried out with the help of construction companies and a feasibility study along with a business plan will be produced.

The creation of the platform aims to re-use surplus products or services through their exchange, aiming at enhancing the circular economy, waste management and reducing energy footprint of companies. EFFICIOUS’s goal is to offer a holistic solution that will generate profit for the companies by creating value for unused products and thus reducing the companies’ costs.

Role of AETHON

AETHON is the only beneficiary and coordinator of the project

Project Information

Duration: 28/07/2020 to 27/01/2023 (30 months)

Budget: €199,778.00

Shift2MaaS

Shift2MaaS

Ongoing

Abstract

Mobility as a Service (MaaS) schemes can be seen as disruptive initiatives with great potential that provide a tailored mobility package to travellers. However, due to challenges such as public/private mobility integration, information handling and sharing, service interoperability and scalability requirements, specific actions to ensure the successful uptake of these schemes are necessary. New technologies play a crucial role in the large-scale uptake of MaaS schemes, and ensure a stable business operation of these schemes at a global level. Interoperability Framework (IF), Travel Shopping, Booking and Ticketing, Validation, Payment and Trip Tracking are technologies developed within the Shift2Rail Innovation Programme 4 (IP4). All these technologies aim to meet the engineering challenges associated with the uptake of MaaS schemes.

The Shift2MaaS project aims to support the uptake of the IP4 technologies and overcome the technical and non-technical barriers for the adoption of new MaaS platforms. Shift2MaaS aims to support the introduction of Shift2Rail IP4 technology within the MaaS context by analysing the needs of the different stakeholders involved. To achieve that Shift2MaaS will demonstrate the benefits of IP4 through demo sites (Lisbon, Malaga and Central East Corridor). The lessons learned will be made available and shared with Shift2Rail IP4. This means that Shift2MaaS builds on and adds to previous projects by making the connection to real environments.

AETHON is one of the key technical partners of the consortium.

Role of AETHON

AETHON is leading the methodology creation regarding requirements elicitation, scenarios’ and use cases definition that will be the foundations for evolution of the project. AETHON is also involved in the operational design of the demonstrations. Furthermore, AETHON plays a significant role in the evaluation and impact assessment of the demo sites.

Partners

Project Information

Duration: 01/12/2018 to 30/6/2021 (30 months)

Budget: €1,499,906.25

Project linkhttp://shift2maas.eu/ (Project website), https://projects.shift2rail.org/s2r_ip4_n.aspx?p=s2r_SHIFT2MAAS (Publication in Shift2Rail)

Athena

Athena

Ongoing

Abstract

ATHENA is a garage project of AETHON aimed at reinventing the way we interact and communicate with our vehicle. In today’s non-automated vehicles, the interaction is simple, press the pedal – it accelerates, turn the wheel – it turns. But what happens in the vehicle of tomorrow, when automation gives your hands the opportunity to wander off and do something else besides grabbing the wheel?

It is simple, one might say, if something happens or I want the car to stop, I regain control simply by grabbing the wheel. That is true, it is possible, but there can be multiple unforeseen problems:

  • Drivers of automated vehicles regain control in a consistent and stabilized manor after around 40 sec (Merat et al., 2014)
  • Another study showed that drivers can take from 2 to more than 25 seconds to regain control, which is a significant time frame especially at high speed. Also, researchers noted that “Significantly longer control transition times were found between driving with and without secondary tasks” (Eriksson & Stanton, 2017)

 

This is only the tip of the iceberg. Automated cars are only starting to appear. In full automation we would not need to take control; vehicles got it covered for us. But then, what is the necessity for having a wheel? How will we communicate with the vehicle?

The Society for Automotive Engineers has developed a standard of 5 automation levels. Level 0 is no automation while level 5 is complete automation. This standard, also adopted by NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, USA – https://www.nhtsa.gov/technology-innovation/automated-vehicles-safety), states that at level 4 and level 5, driver intervention becomes optional. This means that drivers will cease to exist, no wheel or formal driving training will be required. However, interaction between the “passenger” and the vehicle, cannot cease to exist. We need to tell our car where to go and how to get there, make stops if necessary or if we wish to. We should not only be talking about smart and autonomous vehicles but also for informed and empowered operators that will replace the driver concept. Athena aims to empower those operators with voice control.

Athena Concept

Voice control will help us communicate “natural commands”, such as, make a stop after the blue car, and will help us maneuver under various conditions, translating our voice commands to vehicle movement and control. Athena is an AI that makes the translation: it receives the command from the driver and transmits it to the automated vehicle’s system. It does not blindly make a left when the driver requests it, but lets the vehicle know that the driver wants to make a left, leaving the car to decide when its safe. This is a new level of vehicle-machine interaction, a new Human-Machine Interface. It also learns about us as we speak, using Machine Learning and Natural Language Recognition for understanding and improving the commands. Most importantly though, Athena translates those commands to valid vehicle movement, understands complicated maneuvers and requests the vehicle to perform them ensuring that the driver does not become a passenger but an operator, empowering and reinventing the interface of future vehicles.

Short Demo

The automated vehicle is depicted with a red dot. At the end (right side) of the middle lane there is a segment of very low speed limit (~5km/h). “Human” vehicles (in green) choose to change lane to avoid the segment but the automated vehicle will not change lane without a human giving the command. The demo aims to show how Athena will operate in a simple yet relevant example.

* Simulation software provided by Technical University of Delft (http://homepage.tudelft.nl/05a3n/)
** Voice transcription (Speech-to-Text) is powered by Watson, IBM (https://www.ibm.com/watson/)
*** Automated vehicles’ movement: Longitudinal driving model by Papacharalampous et al. (2015)

Tourism on Bicycle (TOPOs)

Tourism on Bicycle (TOPOs)

Ongoing

Abstract

A major problem of tourism in Greece is seasonality. The tourist product that is mainly offered is “sun and sea”. Organized mass tourism usually neglects history and civilization, a matter that makes the strategic search for alternative touristic activities that are attractive throughout the year, a crucial task. Such a form of tourism is cycling tourism that is in high demand by European tourists.

To enhance cycling tourism, the proposal of TOPOs aims at creating a) a certification system for touristic companies with respect to the friendliness of their services for bicyclists and b) an interactive online cycling tourism guide for promoting certified businesses. The evaluation of companies for receiving the certification will focus on the companies’ ability to provide bicyclists with required services. The online cycling tourism guide will provide information about the certified businesses, the surrounding areas and information concerning the difficulty, safety and scenery of the bike routes that connect the certified businesses and points of interest, thus delivering a new promotion tool for the companies.

The project includes a scientific research part which will focus on the definition of the criteria to be considered when assessing business to receive the certification and for the route assessment and a technological – commercial part that concerns the development of the product that will focus on user – friendliness and commercialization.

Role of AETHON

AETHON is the coordinator of the project. Furthermore, AETHON is executing technical tasks related with the technologies that will be developed during the project such as the certification platform and pilot execution.

Partner

Project Information

Duration: 4/6/2018 to 3/6/2021 (36 months)

Budget: €282,398.00

My TRAvel Companion (My-TRAC)

My TRAvel Companion (My-TRAC)

Completed

Abstract

My-TRAC project aims to deliver an innovative application for seamless transport and an ecosystem of models and algorithms for Public Transport – PT user choice simulation, data analytics and affective computing. My-TRAC stands out from other technologies due to three main reasons. First, My-TRAC fosters unprecedented involvement of users during, before and after a trip through a smart Human-Machine interface and numerous functionalities such as crowdsourcing, group recommendations, data exchange. Second, the application implements a vast array of technologies, such as affective computing, Artificial Intelligence and user choice simulation, that fuse expertise from multiple fields. Third, My-TRAC facilitates engagement of multiple stakeholders by seamlessly integrating services and creating connections between Rail operators, Mobility-as-a-Service and other PT providers.

My-TRAC application is a travel companion designed to operate similarly to a human companion; understanding traveller’s attributes and state-of-mind to derive conclusions from vague information as any human does. In addition, My-TRAC will be the traveller’s gateway to various services related to using PT, having Rail in the epicentre. My-TRAC application will also provide predictive information concerning disruptions and disturbances. It will not only display data but analyse them through innovative algorithms to provide improved recommendations.

My-TRAC also involves PT operators through the “operators’ interface” where they can retrieve and visualize aggregated data on users’ movements and state-of-mind that will assist in strategic and dynamic operations. Data that the operators retrieve are aggregated and anonymized while all models and algorithms are applied on the mobile device of the user, seamlessly integrating the “privacy-by-design” concept.

The consortium will test the idea in 4 pilot locations with the cooperation of local operators: NS (NL), ATTIKO Metro (GR), FGC (SP), Fertagus (PT).

AETHON is the initiator of the My-TRAC project idea.

Role of AETHON

AETHON is leading technical tasks related to user-centric technologies of the My-TRAC application. AETHON performs multiple tasks related to behavioural analytics of passengers and participates actively in the data collection processes (design and implementation of questionnaire survey, analysis of mobility patterns etc.). Furthermore, AETHON works on the development of the My-TRAC smartphone application and is leading the development of the “operator’s interface”. Finally, AETHON participates in pilot’s design and execution in 4 countries: Greece, the Netherlands, Spain and Portugal.

Partners

Project Information

Duration: 1/9/2017 to 31/8/2020 (36 months)

Budget: €3,494,476.25

Project linkhttp://www.my-trac.eu/ (Project website), http://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/211972_en.html (Publication in CORDIS)