Energy-autonomous, multi-sensor systems are the objective of the 9D programme; new applications for smart sensor systems are emerging in the fields of consumer electronics, medical devices, and security technology. These are typically characterised by increasingly challenging requirements regarding cost, size, quality, and energy efficiency. The “9D Sense” collaborative project, which is funded by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and coordinated by Robert Bosch GmbH, aims to address this challenge by developing a compact, cost-efficient, and autonomous multi-sensor system.
The new multi-sensor system will combine a three-axis accelerometer, three-axis gyroscope, and three-axis magnetometer to offer nine degrees of freedom. It will also include a power supply unit with a thin-film battery and an energy harvester, along with a secure wireless data transmitter. The system will be capable of precisely determining its position and orientation by evaluating the Earth’s magnetic field and movement patterns. This method is necessary in situations where no GPS or Galileo signal is available for absolute positioning, for example inside buildings.
The 9D Sense project involves the collaboration of eleven partners from four countries. Four of these partners – Robert Bosch GmbH, the Fraunhofer Institute for Silicon Technology ISIT, the Institute of Micro and Information Technology of the Hahn-Schickard Society, and the Austrian company austriamicrosystems AG – are developing technologies for the sensor system. As part of its work on the power supply aspects, Robert Bosch GmbH is working on a thin-film battery in collaboration with Darmstadt University of Technology, the University of Helsinki in Finland, and the French company Air Liquide. Micropelt and the Institute of Micro and Information Technology of the Hahn-Schickard Society are carrying out research into a suitable power supply unit geared towards a special demonstrator. In their role as end users, Gemalto (France), Otto Bock Healthcare, and Bosch Sensortec GmbH are all contributing demonstrators focused on the fields of security technology, medical devices, and navigation.
The project, which is scheduled for completion in November 2014, has received €6million of funding from Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as part of the IKT 2020 research program. By promoting research into an innovative, autonomous sensor system and its uses in medical, navigation, and security applications, the BMBF is helping to reinforce and expand German technology companies’ leading position in Europe in the field of information and communication technologies.
Bosch’s product portfolio comprises pressure sensors, acceleration sensors, yaw-rate sensors, and inertial sensors for a variety of automotive and consumer electronics applications. More information at www.bosch-sensors.com