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Seamless Cities

Seamless Navigation Services for Urban Areas in Support of COPERNICUS

Final press release (download .pdf)

Project objectives

SeamlessCities is a large-scale demonstrator of intermodal transport services that provide seamless real-time navigation and environmental information.

It aims to facilitate applications for seamless localisation and navigation services for European urban areas and to boost the use of Earth observation data provided by the European programme Copernicus in mobile services. 

An intermodal transport service app (incl. multimodal routing and booking) will be developed as a large-scale demonstrator by the consortium for the City of Nuremberg, which aims  to roll out the service in further European cities.
Meanwhile, an app developer camp will be organised and held to encourage the development of further city app concepts co-financed by the project and support their further development in cooperation with a European city.


SeamlessCities addresses the challenges cities face by creating a demonstrator for seamless, sustainable, and secure transportation. A test bed for a seamless navigation infrastructure will be established in Nuremberg based on awiloc® technology from Fraunhofer ISS. This technology enables continuous positioning – both indoors and outdoors – by combining satellite navigation (GNSS) and Wifi-based localisation. The infrastructure for mobile services will be enriched with further environmental data (e.g. on traffic, weather forecasts, and noise or air quality). At the same time, the large-scale demonstrator will focus on the infrastructure, which enables intermodal transport services to be used commercially by new companies with further seamless navigation offers. This will be realised through: 

  • Development of the SeamlessCities app, an intermodal transport service for the city of Nuremberg. This app will take into account all means of transportation, traffic routes, and traffic situations in real time; navigate to, between, and within means of transport through combined use of satellite navigation and Wifi-based localisation; and provide location-based environmental information using Earth observation services.
  • Generating a Wifi infrastructure (radio maps) based on awiloc® technology for a seamless city-services demonstrator in Nuremberg and at least one additional city
  • Organisation of an app developer camp for SeamlessCities apps based on GNSS, Wifi, and Copernicus data at Fraunhofer IIS in Nuremberg. The app camp will provide developers with access to test and development infrastructures while enhancing their understanding of the seamless navigation infrastructure and the benefits of integrating Copernicus data into mobile services. The goal will be to encourage the development of further related mobile services. The realisation of the best two app concepts in cooperation with a European city will be co-financed by the project in the amount of EUR 20,000.

Actors involved (as representatives of stakeholders at the regional and national levels)

Expected outcomes and impacts

In addition to end users, the project will provide direct benefits to cities and public transport providers. It will also result in a series of multiplier effects and possibilities for replication and extension of the project’s outcomes: 

  1. The SeamlessCities app for Nuremberg will be developed by the consortium partners and tested in a Living Lab feasibility trial. It will provide citizens and visitors with an intermodal and seamless transport service that includes real-time traffic and environmental information.  Transferring the app to at least one additional city will then demonstrate its capability for adoption by other European cities in accordance with their local needs. 
  2. A Wifi infrastructure for seamless city services will be generated in at least one city in addition to Nuremberg. 
  3. The project will support the development of two further demo apps produced during the app camp to provide seamless city services. 
  4. The project will generate app developer kits for use by further app developers in creating seamless mobility services enriched with Earth observation data. 


Consortium partners 

  Website Name of organisation Region / Country
  www.anwendungszentrum.de/  Anwendungszentrum GmbH Oberpfaffenhofen  (AZO) Germany
Short description of key activities AZO’s activities focus on supporting company foundations and commercial applications based on aerospace technologies and infrastructures. AZO has so far supported 66 start-ups in recent years, which places it among the most successful incubation programmes involving the commercial use of space technologies and infrastructures. In coordinating Europe's two leading innovation networks for the space programmes Galileo (satellite navigation) and Copernicus (Earth observation), AZO also supports the development of more than 500 new business and product innovations every year. 
  www.iis.fraunhofer.de   Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits – FhG IIS Germany
Short description of key activities With 59 Institutes throughout Germany and numerous international research centres and liaison offices in Europe, the USA, and Asia, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft has an established reputation for excellence at the forefront of applied research and development. The Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS in Erlangen, Germany, ranks first among the Fraunhofer Institutes in terms of headcount and revenues. In close cooperation with partners and clients, the Institute provides research and development services in the following areas: digital radio broadcasting systems; audio and multimedia technology; digital cinema systems; design automation and integrated circuits; wired, wireless, and optical networks; localization and navigation; high-speed camera systems; imaging systems and nanofocus X-ray technology; medical sensor solutions; and communications technology in transport and logistics.
  www.nik-nbg.de  Nürnberger Initiative für die Kommunikationswirtschaft (NIK) e.V. Germany
Short description of key activities Nürnberger Initiative für die Kommunikationswirtschaft e.V., NIK, is an ITC network that has been working on innovative projects for 17 years. In addition to embracing mobile network providers, network suppliers, and companies developing mobile applications, NIK has been engaged in several R&D projects focusing on mobile solutions since 2001. The first 3G trials involving commercial applications, for example, were initiated and coordinated by NIK in 2001 together with Lucent Technologies. To this day, NIK maintains a continuous exchange of ideas among expert circles even after the end of its trials in a project called NuMAC (Nuremberg Mobile Application Centre). 
  www.mobiliance.de  Mobiliance AG Germany
Short description of key activities Mobiliance AG is an independent mobility service provider whose mission is to integrate all mobility service providers (including flight, train, personal vehicle, car sharing, taxi, and other private and public passenger transport providers) in one single hub. The objective is to make all of the options for getting door-to-door from A to B (with precise addresses) transparent and filter them according to price, time, comfort, and CO2 emissions. This will make it possible to provide travellers with recommendations that best fit their individual profiles. They will then be able to book all means of transport through a web-based booking engine and direct interfaces to be established with the relevant transport providers.


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