Mobility and traffic are the foundation of any economy because they allow exchange processes between people and goods. As a result of globalization with increasingly intense interdependence of people and the economy a high growth in traffic has taken place in recent years . In addition to the positive effects of the current transport systems also negative effects have risen up in the form of multiple environmental impacts ( noise, pollutants , greenhouse gases ) and high economic damage caused by capacity constraints and lack of infrastructure measures which caused congestion , delays and traffic accidents .

The consideration of social development and climate change is therefore essential for accepted and sustainable mobility and transport concepts of the future . On this base the profile area Mobility and Transport Engineering ( MTE) has identified interdisciplinary thematic challenges in the form of research activities. Those are grouped into certain reasearch objectives and research fields.

The research fields include the following areas :

The research activities

face the profile areas current challenges.

With a clear vision of the initiation of new partnerships among research institutes, industry, funding agencies and the RWTH Aachen University and the aim of linking pull and push innovations the profile area MTW menstions new task forces in the fields of

and other research projects to give answers to future problems.


CMP - Research and Development of new and sustainable driving systems

With the Center for Mobile Propulsion (CMP ) , RWTH Aachen University takes advantage out of another high-profile research building . The emphasis has been on the electrification of mobile propulsion chains. The upcoming global changes in the generation and distribution of energy will have a significant impact on the mobile sector. Within the existing national infrastructure for power distribution there will be a movement towards the power supply.

The research objectives of the MTE in the field of new and sustainable propulsion systems by workingn with the CMP are the following

  • bisection of the number of cars, which are operated with conventional fuels in city traffic by 2030
  • complete resignation of such vehicles in cities by 2050
  • achieve an essentially CO2-free city logistics in major urban centers by 2030
  • besection of CO2 emissions by 2020 in the aviation industry (based on the year 2000)

In order to meet those goals , research objectives have been established under the direction of the profile area MTE :

  • Environmentally friendly, safe and silent vehicles for all modes of road vehicles, such as ships, rail vehicles and aircrafts
  • Environmentally friendly fuels and related infrastructure
  • Holistic sustainability evaluations and modelling of vehicles and propulsion systems

Optimisation of the performance of multimodal logistics chains

Despite of ambitious reduction targets, rising resource costs and the growing internationalisation of external costs, both the demand for transport services in freight and passenger mobility are rising . An important contribution to reventing the external effects and the resulting contrained capacity is the multi-modal freight and passenger afford . The objective is made up of the integration of sustainable modes of transport in the transport system regarding criteria in terms of the required time / transport time , flexibility , sustainability, acceptance , etc.

In this context significant technical , planning , informational and organizational barriers still have to be overcome. At this point, the know- how of the actors of the RWTH Aachen University make a significant contribution . The development of drive and storage systems for new modes as well as the design of international standards and intermodal interfaces for multimodal data consistent telematics systems are the key points. Other issues are the d evelopment of robust timetables and real-time capable routing systems based on advanced methods of operations research , infrastructure and transportation system planning and mobility management and the design of appropriate incentive schemes based on surveys acceptance of multimodal freight and passenger traffic.

Specific planning tasks on long-term level are the integrated concept, infrastructure and capacity planning of the transport system and the selection and integration of new means of transport and transport services in the system. In the short and medium-term level interface-free information , booking and payment systems are to be developped and integrated . In addition, appropriate incentive systems and optimizing control systems need to be developed . Overall, the result are complex tasks that can only be solved by referring to the skills of mechanical engineering, transport and urban planning as well as computer science, electrical engineering, social sciences and economics only in interdisciplinary co-work.


Reduction of the traffic side effects and improvment of the road safety

Mobility is often viewed as a basic human need and is therefore demanded by the society. It is mandatory to counterpart the personal, social and economic benefits of mobility to the society's effort . These are primarily being manifested by the high energy demand and unwanted emissions and traffic accidents .

Reducing the number of traffic fatalities remains a major challenge on the road , because worldwide each year more than 1.2 million people die in traffic accidents. In terms of road safety , the European Commission has set a reduction in the number of fatalities by 50 percent based on 2010 levels by 2020 . To achieve this goal, it is necessary to exhaust all the potential to increase road safety.

In addition to the possibilities of passive safety measures, active measures offer a much greater potential by prev enting accidents and are also associated with lower economic costs . Apart from that it is obvious, that vehicles should meet specific customer requirements for a comfortable, sustainable and sporty car .

Overall, the modern automobile needs to meet the three main requirements efficiency, driving safety and driving experience, even though they are quite oppositional. An important model in this context are advanced driver assistance systems, which aim to assist the driver. The driver itself is at the center of the traffic , since he is ultimately responsible for maintaining the vehicle in accordance with the Vienna Convention . The action of the driver is grouped into the following th ree levels:

  • navigation level : In this case, the driver decides on his route within an existing road network , which he pursued while driving.
  • web guiding level : At this level, the driver selects hia road according to his perception of the road, the surrounding traffic from a target speed and a target price .
  • stabilization level : In this case, the driver acts as a controller by operating the primary controls such as steering wheel , traction and brake pedal and gearshift lever suitable.

The main support of the driver is located on the web management level , as the driver can be supplied with information and warnings on this level regarding the correct ancitipation . If the driver doesn't react as desired, advanced driver assistance systems can help to optimize the alignment to avoid every possible accident.

Another way to relieve the driver is the automation of parts of the driving task . While active, adaptive cruise control is state of the art nowadays, it will soon be replaced by modern techniques with which the driving task, for example, will be completly transformed to the car by the driver. This is just a matter of time until legal conditions can be met.


Aldenhoven Testing Center

In order to explore future driver assistance systems and drive, vehicle and mobility concepts, the Aldenhoven Testing Center of RWTH Aachen University GmbH was opened in April 2014 . The Aldenhoven Testing Center is a joint project of the RWTH Aachen University and the Kreis Düren , which is funded by the state of North Rhine - Westphalia and the EU to create a branch and company-independent test center , especially for small and medium-sized companies in NRW. The shared commitment of the Innstitut für Kraftfahrzeuge Aachen , of the Lehrstuhl für Verbrennngskraftmaschinen and the Institut für Regelungstechnik , as well as the Kreis Düren represented by the ACI GmbH, in 2009 , the first phase was completed . Both independence and the ability to use simulated Galileo signals make the testing ground attractive not only for the many automotive suppliers in NRW , but also for companies from other industries such as communications systems, traffic management and others.

With its six different route elements, the ATC offer a broad framework as an environment for various tests . In this context, Galileo test areas for motor vehicles and rail vehicles are constructed , which are unique in Europe . The physical infrastructure enables the flexible representation of relevant traffic and crossing situations with the already available Galileo -based localizing function .

If you are interested , please visit the homepage of the ATC to get more information about the individual route elements , etc.

The ATC is integrated into the project Campus Aldenhoven of Düren.


Galileo Above

Global Navigation Satellite Systems ( GNSS) recently are gaining more importance in the field of mobility in the individual modes of transport . This development is allowed for by the European Union with the GNSS "Galileo " . In contrast to currently available systems such as GPS , it provides users with a higher accuracy , a legally guaranteed availability and information on signal integrity in real time.

As part of the Task Force Galileo Online: GO! a GNNS signal receiver for navigation with Galileo signals and a rudimentary Fleet Management Program is developed. In addition to increased accuracy in the position localization using Galileo signals , the receiver convinced by very short latency times and a very fast signal recovery after it briefly lost GNNS signal (eg through a tunnel ride). Due to the high positioning accuracy and the latency , the receiver is perfectly to be used in highly dynamic leveler technical solutions in the post set (eg . targeted braking and automatic coupling of trains ) . The field of application of the receiver will be mainly in the field of web navigation. Specifically, a classical object is used in the field of logistics freight station to show the high potential of the receiver with respect to the automation in the rail industry (based on the projects Sipos and Flex Cargo Rail ) within the framework of this project.

For this purpose, a freight station scenario is built at which several autonomous trains are able to deliver ware in an optimal sequence . In this connection autonomous agents developed at IRT test vehicles ( buggies ) can be used . The entire system will be tested in the Galileo test centers in Wildenrath ( railGATE ) and Aldenhoven ( automotiveGATE /ATC ) . Due to the adjustable GNNS signal quality, the infrastructure at those test centers is perfect to test the reliability of the system. The project is financed by the DLR/ Space Agency .


Center for European Research on Mobility (CERM)

The mobility of each individual, whether individually or professionally motivated, is reflected in passenger transport. Mobility greatly also depends on the personal , economic and demographic development. The expected different economic and demographic development in the individual regions of Germany will affect the long-term traffic. However, political decisions in the areas of Transport, Building and Urban Development will shape the future developments . In regard to long-term transportation planning and transport investment estimations for development in mobility over e long period of time are indispensable. To enable the RWTH Aachen Universities contribution to the assessment of mobility in future developments at European level the composition of a modern research traffic data center is mandatory.

The structure of the traffic data center is to be understood as complementary , not yet funded part of the puzzle , which runs on top of the CERM - promotion ( Centre for European Research on Mobility ) by the RWTH - strategy funds . In this environment the CERM activities need to be supplemented by a wide collection of classification and abstraction of traffic data , as well as the extrapolation of the results produced in Aldenhoven on large commercial spaces. The research traffic data center provides the following functions for research :

  1. Loading of worldwide traffic scenarios
  2. Real-time traffic monitoring across all modes of transport in the loaded scenario
  3. Real -time analysis of congestion and delays
  4. Developing real-time solutions and traffic management strategies
    • calculation of optimized avoidance strategies
    • Calculation of optimized compensation strategies
    • Simulation and extrapolation of alternative strategies and compensation strategies
  5. Development of planning tools
    • Site Planning
    • need for expansion

Energy Management for Mobility

The risen awareness of the fact that fossil fuels are finite arises the complexe task for the society to cover the energy needs by renewable energy speaking in the medium or long term. At the same time the negative effects of pollutants , particle and noise emissions need to be reduced. This means that both stationary and mobile energy consumers need to be made more efficient and powered by renewable energy.

In order not to endanger the social consensus in this process of change , the transition to new solutions needs to be designed without harshness or extreme fluctuations in respect to transport performance and costs . Mobility is an essential factor for prosperity and quality of life. Therefore , this requirement is in the interest of public , manufacturers and users. On a global scale
a growth restriction is not an acceptable solution because the currently highly developed regions can not deny emerging companies' participation in the prosperity.

Besides the insight into necessary changes a consensus is required as to which tasks are obtained for the different social groups and how the costs of research and implementation can be shared .

In order to meet the goal of sustainable energy economy based on renewable sources , it is necessary to develop a common understanding of the future networked energy system from stationary and mobile elements. Analogous to biological ecosystems technical ecosystems need to be integrated in a kind of symbiosis with each other in future to work holistically optimal in respect to energy and sustainability. To this end and in the profile areas' view it is necesssary to strengthen or establish the theme system research in the area of sustainability in addition to a close cooperation with the different faculties driven projects such as the Boost Fund Urban Future Outline ( UFO) within the RWTH . From the perspective of the profile area , for this purpose it is necessary establish a bridge professorship in the field of construction , since the basic research on sustainability systems can be useful combined with an application-oriented field of work , namely the infrastructure . Since infrastructures are durable and resource intensive , an in-depth study of the connections and system dynamics makes sense at this point .

From addressed knowledge about the interactions technical objectives for stationary and mobile systems must be derived and agreed with each other. Jointly defined interfaces between both domains, communication and power transmission, are required.


Cooperative, automatic Driving

Intelligent driver assistance systems are becoming more essential in order to improve the safety and ride comfort on the road. Thus, for example, predictive pedestrian protection requires that an " intelligent virtual passenger " identifies traffic conditions and critically evaluates in real-time to assist the driver. Furthermore it is necessary to develop similar technologies for both pedestrians and cyclists. .

Intelligent driver assistance up to the completely autonomous acquisition of the driving function ( 'autopilot ' ) requires reliability of sensors for the detection of situations and intentions in all its variations , as well as correctness and reliability of software , hardware and actuators. Driver assistance is much more complex than for vehicles such as aircraft , for which the dedicated flight corridors already exist and neither pedestrians nor traffic lights, road works or traffic signs must be considered.

Therefore, new methods need to be explored to develop and test the necessary systems . N ew technical and software architectures , reliable communication techniques with the transportation infrastructure and the environment of the vehicle are needed. It is to clarify sustainably how the interplay of intelligent mobile machines and human beings in the vehicle or person on the road will be represented in the future.

A revolutionary approach would use a central "brain" for situational awareness and action dissipation and can be supplemented modularily by sensors and higher , assistive driving functions . Such a holistic development would show faster results. A related hedging methodology which is based on virtual test-driven kilometers, which are early in development, could be complemented by real test drives, which in turn are virtually extended with augmented reality. These methodologies include alienated Galileo positioning signals as well as virtual pedestrians, cyclists and other risk scenarios.

The goal is to provide an efficiently working, safe for all traffic participants such as pedestrians, cyclists and car drivers transport a s a long -term vision . This will only be achieved if mobility and activities motifs and profiles are being understood in order to recognize and predict modal choicce behavior and enable a sustainable infrastructure design . This requires, among other things, an integrated , reliable communication infrastructure between all road users .