EU-funded project to deliver innovative Internet architecture model

May 14, 2014

EU-funded project to deliver innovative Internet architecture model

[Date: 2011-05-30]

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The Internet has revolutionised how people do business, how we communicate and interact. But more change is coming… EU-funded researchers and industrialists from Europe have joined forces to bring the Internet and everyday objects together, resulting in headache-free activities and our improved well-being. The IOT-A (‘Internet of things architecture’) project is backed with almost EUR 12 million under the ‘Information and communication technologies’ (ICT) Theme of the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

The IOT-A project partners are developing an architecture reference model that will enable all objects to connect to the Internet. Whatever the technology, everything will be connected, making interoperability issues a thing of the past. The 20-strong consortium believes that the advantages to such a model are many, ultimately leading to better healthcare, cuts in energy costs, securer supply chains and less traffic.

‘In our vision, IOT-A will expand the boundaries of today’s Internet to encompass the physical world and enable identification, information gathering and understanding,’ says Dr Thorsten Kramp of IBM Research-Zurich GmbH, an IOT-A partner. ‘Three years from now, the foundation will be laid for any object having a sensor to connect to the Internet securely and easily.’

The team is working on two different, yet viable scenarios to demonstrate the technology for an open, consolidated ‘Internet of Things’ architecture.

For instance, to help retailers improve customer retention, the IOT-A project is focusing on research activities that will allow consumers to enjoy a ‘more personalised’ shopping experience. Germany-based SAP Research Living Lab’s ‘The Future Retail Center’, in Switzerland’s Regensdorf region, is giving scientists the chance to develop such an advanced individual experience according to shopping recommendations on smart phones.

Based on their preferences and shopping history as well as a certain price range, consumers obtain recommendations for their purchases as their smart phones are connected to wireless sensors that are attached to the Center’s store products. The consumers can find what they’re looking for much more efficiently and without the hassle. It should be noted that product details are also available thanks to this system. Carbon footprint details and nutrition facts are included, as is the production site of the product in question.

Also, two locations in Spain and Italy are giving scientists the means to monitor and process patients’ vitals. The IOT-A team says the application allows patient data to be transferred to local hospitals and to be assessed for major physiological changes. In the event that deviations are picked up and support is needed, medical help will be on its way.

The advantage of IOT-A’s model, according to the partners, is that a ‘common ground’ for sensors will be established, giving people, enterprises and public entities the means to connect to websites without restrictions. The team adds that IOT-A offers a sensor network that can be used in combination with the controlling infrastructure of a smart city. Local and regional groups, and even agencies and research institutes abroad can connect via this sensor network.

Ultimately, the project partners will establish a homogeneous link of sensors irrespective of the wireless technology that exists, including WiFi and Bluetooth, among others.

Led by the German group VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH, the IOT-A partners are from Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. The project kicked off in 2010 and will end in 2013. The partners are scheduled to release initial project results at the IOT-week 2011 in Barcelona, Spain, from 6 to 9 June.

For more information, please visit:


IOT-week 2011:

VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH:

ICT Research in FP7:

Category: Projects
Data Source Provider: VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH
Document Reference: Based on information from VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik GmbH
<!–Programme or Service Acronym: MS-FR C, MS-EL C, MS-D C, MS-B C, MS-I C, MS-UK C, FP7, FP7-COOPERATION, FP7-ICT, FUTURE RESEARCH
–>Subject Index: Coordination, Cooperation; Information and communication technology applications ; Materials Technology; Scientific Research

RCN: 33461

Originally posted 2011-05-31 14:11:11.

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