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About this book

With the exception of written letters and personal conversations, digital technology forms the basis of nearly every means of communication and information that we use today. It is also used to control the essential elements of economic, scientific, and public and private life: security, production, mobility, media, and healthcare. Without exaggerating it is possible to say that digital technology has become one of the foundations of our technologically oriented civilization.
The benefits of modern data technology are so impressive and the potential for future applications so enormous that we cannot fail to promote its development if we are to retain our leading role in the competitive international marketplace. In this process, security plays a vital role in each of the areas of application of digital technology — the more technological sectors are entrusted to data systems technology, the more important their reliability becomes to us.
Developing digital systems further while simultaneously ensuring that they always act and respond in the best interests of people is a central goal of the technological research and development propagated and conducted by Fraunhofer.

Table of Contents


1. Digital Information – The “Genetic Code” of Modern Technology

The digital era began relatively slowly. The first programmable computer using binary code was the Zuse Z3, designed and built by Konrad Zuse and Helmut Schreyer in Berlin in 1941. In 1971 the first microprocessor was patented; it contained 8,000 transistors. Within ten years, nearly ten times as many transistors were being used; by 2016, the number was around 8 billion.
Reimund Neugebauer

2. Digitization – Areas of Application and Research Objectives

For most readers of this book, digitization has already become a natural part of their everyday life. In essence, “digitization” refers to the binary representation of texts, images, sounds, films and the properties of physical objects in the form of consecutive sequences of 1s and 0s. These sequences can be processed by modern computers at exceptionally high speeds – billions of commands per second.
Sophie Hippmann, Raoul Klingner, Miriam Leis

3. Virtual Reality in Media and Technology

Digitization of cultural artifacts and industrial production processes
Virtual and Augmented Reality technologies have by now become established in numerous engineering areas of application. Also in the cultural and media fields interactive three-dimensional content is being increasingly made available for information purposes, and used in scientific research. On the one hand, this development is accelerated by current advances in smartphones, tablets and head-mounted displays. These support complex 3D applications in mobile application scenarios, and enable us to capture our real physical environment using multimodal sensors in order to correlate it with the digital 3D world. On the other hand, new automated digitization technologies such as CultLab3D of the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD allow the production of the necessary digital replicas of real objects, quickly, economically and of high quality.
Dieter W. Fellner

4. Video Data Processing

Best pictures on all channels
More than three quarters of all bits transmitted today over the consumer Internet are video data. Accordingly, video data is of major importance for the digital transformation. The related field of digital video processing has played a key role in establishing successful products and services in a wide range of sectors including communications, health, industry, autonomous vehicles and security technology. Particularly in the entertainment sector, video data has shaped the mass market via services like HD and UHD TV or streaming services. For these applications, efficient transmission only became feasible through video coding with methods of efficient compression. In addition, production systems and processing techniques for highly realistic dynamic 3D video scenes have been developed. In these key areas, the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich-Hertz-Institute, HHI is playing a worldwide leading role, in particular in the key areas of video coding and 3D video processing, also through successfully contributing to video coding standardization.
Karsten Müller, Heiko Schwarz, Peter Eisert, Thomas Wiegand

5. Audio Codecs

Listening pleasure from the digital world
The development of music recording and reproduction has been characterized by the quest for perfection ever since its inception under Thomas Alva Edison. This is true for all fields of recording and reproduction technology, from microphones and sound storage media to loudspeaker technology. Concertquality sound reproduction which matches the original with complete fidelity remains the goal of research. This can only be achieved, however, if all of the factors involved in listening are addressed, whether they are acoustic, psychoacoustic, or psychological. Fraunhofer IDMT’s further development of wave field synthesis technology as a marketable product – already in use in highly demanding open air and opera house productions – plays a key role here. The uncomplicated synchronous storage and transmission of metadata provided by the current MPEG-H 3D Audio coding method allows listeners at home to interactively shape their listening experience.
Karlheinz Brandenburg, Christoph Sladeczek

6. Digital Radio

Worldwide premier radio quality
Digitization is moving ahead at full speed. For most people, the smartphone is a constant companion; manufacturing businesses are also pushing ahead with digitization on the factory floor in the wake of Industry 4.0. Even radio cannot stop the trend in its tracks: step by step, digital radio is replacing its familiar FM cousin. A common practice in numerous European nations, and many developing nations are preparing for the switchover. Digital radio offers numerous advantages: greater program diversity, improved reception, a wealth of enhanced services. Digital radio will grow together with mobile telephony in the long term. Whereas radio sends information that is of interest to everyone, mobile telephony takes on “personalized” information. In this way, the two technologies can be the ideal complement to one another.
Albert Heuberger

7. 5G Data Transfer at Maximum Speed

More data, more speed, more security
Mobile communications have permanently changed our society and our ways of communicating ever since the global availability of mobile speech services, and because these communications form the basis for mobile Internet. They have facilitated a new dimension of productivity growth and manufacturing and service process networking since the use of the Internet. Their technical basis is founded on a deep understanding of the relationships between radio and telecommunications technology, beginning with radio wave propagation and modeling, through techniques for digital signal processing and a scalable system design for a cellular radio system with mobility support, to methods for system analysis and optimization. The Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications, Heinrich-Hertz-Institute, HHI has been working in the field of mobile telephony communications for 20 years and has made key contributions to the third, fourth, and fifth generations. Alongside research articles and numerous first-time demonstrations of key technological components, the institute is also an active contributor to 3GPP standardization.
Ronald Freund, Thomas Haustein, Martin Kasparick, Kim Mahler, Julius Schulz-Zander, Lars Thiele, Thomas Wiegand, Richard Weiler

8. International Data Spaces

Reference architecture for the digitization of industries
The International Data Space (IDS) offers an information technology architecture for safeguarding data sovereignty within the corporate ecosystem. It provides a virtual space for data where data remains with the data owner until it is needed by a trusted business partner. When the data is shared, terms of use can be linked to the data itself.
Analysis of six use cases from the first phase of the prototype implementation of the IDS architecture shows that the focus lies on the standardized interface, the information model for describing data assets, and the connector component. Further use cases are planned for the next wave of implementation that are based on the broker functionality and require the use of vocabularies for simple data integration.
In addition, companies need to standardize the principles that are translated into the terms of use. These principles need to be shaped, described, documented, and implemented in a simple and understandable way. They also need to be understood in the same way by different actors in the corporate ecosystem, thus requiring semantic standardization.
Furthermore, the IDS Reference Architecture Model needs to be set in context with respect to related models. In the F3 use case, an OPC UA adapter is used. Additional use cases for integration with the Plattform Industrie 4.0 administration shell and Industrial Internet Reference Architecture are pending.
The IDS Architecture is also increasingly being utilized in so-called verticalization initiatives, in healthcare and in the energy sector for example. These kinds of initiatives – like the Materials Data Space – demonstrate the crossdomain applicability of the architectural components and provide information about further development needs.
Finally, in anticipation of the future development of the use cases and utilization of the IDS, work on the economic valuation of data and on the settlement and pricing of data transactions must be accelerated.
Boris Otto, Michael ten Hompel, Stefan Wrobel

9. EMOIO Research Project

An interface to the world of computers
Adaptive assistance systems are able to support the user in a wide range of different situations. These systems take external information and attempt to deduce user intentions from the context of use, without requiring or allowing direct feedback from the user. For this reason, it remains unclear whether the system’s behavior was in accordance with the user’s intentions – leading to problems in the interaction between human and adaptive technology. The goal of the EMOIO project is to overcome potential barriers of use with the aid of neuroscientific methods. Merging ergonomics with the neurosciences into the new field of neuroergonomics research produces enormous potential for innovation, to make the symbiosis between humans and technology more intuitive. To this end, brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) offer a new generation of interfaces between humans and technology. BCIs make it possible to register mental states such as attention and emotions and transmit this information directly to a technological system. So-called neuroadaptive systems continuously use this information in order to adjust the behavior, functions or the content of an interactive system accordingly. A neuroadaptive system is being developed by a consortium of partners from research and industry as part of the EMOIO project. The goal of the system is to recognize, based on the users’ brain activity, whether system-initiated behaviors are approved or rejected. The system is able to use this information to provide the person with the best possible assistance and thus adapt to individual and situational demands. To do this, neuroscientific methods such as electroencephalography (EEG) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) are being evaluated with respect to their suitability for measuring emotions (approval/rejection).
In addition, a corresponding algorithm is being developed for real-time emotional recognition. The miniaturization and resilience of the EEG and fNIRS sensors are also being promoted. Finally, the developed system is being explored in three different areas of application: web-based adaptive user interfaces, vehicle interaction, and human-robot collaboration.
Wilhelm Bauer, Mathias Vukelić

10. Fraunhofer Additive Manufacturing Alliance

From data straight to highly complex products
Additive manufacturing is known as 3D printing in popular science. It refers to a relatively new group of manufacturing techniques with unique properties and possibilities compared with conventional manufacturing technologies. The Fraunhofer Additive Manufacturing Alliance currently coordinates 17 Fraunhofer institutes working on additive manufacturing. It covers the entire process chain: the development, application and implementation of additive manufacturing techniques and processes as well as the relevant materials. This chapter provides an overview of the technologies, applications, particular opportunities and further goals of applied research in the area of additive manufacturing within the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. We make particular mention of mesoscopic lightweight design, biomimetic structures, high-performance tools for hot sheet metal forming, ceramic components, printable biomaterial, largesize plastic components, integrating sensory-diagnostic and actuator therapeutic functions into implants, and three-dimensional multimaterial components.
Bernhard Müller

11. Future Work Lab

The workplace of the future
The Future Work Lab – an innovation laboratory for work, people, and technology – provides companies, associations, coworkers and labor unions with extensive opportunities to experience future-oriented work concepts. The laboratory combines demonstrations of specific Industry 4.0 applications with competencydevelopment offers and integrates the current state of work research. In this way, it facilitates holistic developmental progress in the field of work, people, and technology. Taken as a whole, the Future Work Lab provides a significant contribution to long-term increases in companies’ competitiveness through participative design of sustainable working environments..
Wilhelm Bauer, Moritz Hämmerle, Thomas Bauernhansl, Thilo Zimmermann

12. Cyber-Physical Systems

Research for the digital factory
Digitization is the defining innovation driver for value creation in the modern global industrial society. At the forefront stand the increase in efficiency for flexibilization and improved resource utilization provided by the self-optimizing automation of processes. Digital technologies must become inherent components of the production system.
A cyber-physical system represents the sought-after unity of reality and its digital reproduction, and is the next stage in development of mechatronics into a symbiotic systems approach based on the IT networking of all components. IT together with non-technical disciplines have produced a range of methods, techniques and processes by which sensors, actuators, and cognition can be integrated into technical systems so they demonstrate functionalities that have only been fulfilled by biological systems until now. In this way, the evolution prompted by Industry 4.0 technologies leads to a genuinely disruptive paradigm change. Production, suppliers, and product developers enter a new quality of innovative cooperation.
Welf-Guntram Drossel, Steffen Ihlenfeldt, Tino Langer, Roman Dumitrescu

13. “Go Beyond 4.0” Lighthouse Project

Individualized mass production
Industry’s need for new technologies to provide differentiation and efficiency gains in production is the driving force of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft to pool competencies in order to provide technologies for success. The thus far rigid mass production will in future gain new impetus through digital manufacturing technologies such as inkjet printing and laser-based techniques, in particular. The integration of digital manufacturing technologies into a range of mass production environments will permit individualized production with zero setup times and only slightly increased cycle times.
Thomas Otto

14. Cognitive Systems and Robotics

Intelligent data utilization for autonomous systems
Cognitive systems are able to monitor and analyze complex processes, which also provides them with the ability to make the right decisions in unplanned or unfamiliar situations. Fraunhofer experts are employing machine learning techniques to harness new cognitive functions for robots and automation solutions. To do this, they are equipping systems with technologies that are inspired by human abilities, or imitate and optimize them. This report describes these technologies, illustrates current example applications, and lays out scenarios for future areas of application.
Christian Bauckhage, Thomas Bauernhansl, Jürgen Beyerer, Jochen Garcke

15. Fraunhofer Big Data and Artificial Intelligence Alliance

Mining valuable data
Big data is a management issue across sectors and promises to deliver a competitive advantage via structured knowledge, increased efficiency and value creation. Within companies, there is significant demand for big data skills, individual business models, and technological solutions.
Fraunhofer assists companies to identify and mine their valuable data. Experts from Fraunhofer’s Big Data and Artificial Intelligence Alliance demonstrate how companies can benefit from an intelligent enrichment and analysis of their data.
Stefan Wrobel, Dirk Hecker

16. Safety and Security

Cybersecurity as the basis for successful digitization
Cybersecurity is the basis for successful digitization and for innovation in all sectors, e.g. in digital production (Industry 4.0), smart energy supply, logistics and mobility, healthcare, public administration, and cloud-based services, too. The role of cybersecurity [13][11] is to protect companies and their values and to prevent damage or at least limit the impact of any potential damage. Cybersecurity encompasses measures to protect IT-based systems (hardware and software) from manipulation and thus safeguards their integrity. Furthermore, it includes concepts and processes that guarantee the confidentiality of sensitive information and the protection of the private sphere as well as the availability of functions and services. Guaranteeing integrity, confidentiality, and availability are the familiar safety objectives already pursued by traditional IT security, but achieving them has become increasingly difficult and complex with digitization and networking and the accompanying connection between the digital and physical worlds.
The article that follows provides an insight into current trends and developments in the field of application-oriented cybersecurity research and makes use of selected example applications to outline challenges and potential solutions.
Claudia Eckert, Michael Waidner

17. Fault-Tolerant Systems

Resilience as a security concept in the era of digitization
The more we become dependent on the functioning of complex technical systems, the more important their resilience becomes: they need to maintain the required system performance even when internal and external failures and disruptions occur. This applies both to individual systems (e.g. cars, medical devices, airplanes) as well as to infrastructure (traffic, supply systems, information and communications systems). Designing these complex systems to be resilient requires Resilience Engineering, that is, a process of maintaining critical functions, ensuring a graceful degradation (in the case where the critical functionality cannot be retained due to the severity of the disruption) and supporting the fast recovery of complex systems. This necessitates generic capabilities as well as adaptable and tailored technical solutions that protect the system in the case of critical issues and unexpected or previously nonexistent events. Cascade effects that occur in critical infrastructures during disruption, for example, may thus be simulated and their effects proactively minimized.
Stefan Hiermaier, Benjamin Scharte

18. Blockchain

Reliable Transactions
Blockchain technology has major relevance for the digitization of services and processes in many different areas of application beyond the financial industry and independent of cryptocurrencies in particular. Whilst for the Internet of Things the potential for automation associated with smart contracts is especially significant, for applications from the supply chain fields or for proofs of origin it is the irreversibility of the transactions conducted. This article describes the functioning of this new technology and the most important resulting qualities. The chapter provides a list of criteria for identifying digitization projects for which blockchain technology is suitable.
Because of the extent of blockchain technologies and their applications, developing the basic technologies requires a multidisciplinary approach, as does developing applications, carrying out studies of cost-effectiveness, and designing new governance models. The diverse competencies offered by the various Fraunhofer institutes, put the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in a position to make a significant contribution to the ongoing development and application of blockchain technology.
Wolfgang Prinz, Thomas Rose, Thomas Osterland, Clemens Putschli

19. E-Health

Digital Transformation and its Potential for Healthcare
While the digital transformation is well underway in numerous areas of society, medicine still faces immense challenges. Nevertheless, the potential resulting from the interaction of modern biotechnology and information technology is huge. Initial signs of the transformation can be seen in numerous places – a transformation that will further be accelerated by the integration of previously separate medical data silos and the focused use of new technologies. In this chapter, we describe the current state of integrated diagnostics and the mechanisms of action behind the emerging field of digital healthcare. One of the areas of focus is the recent revolution caused by artificial intelligence. At the same time, we have seen the emancipation of patients who now have access to an enormous breadth of medical knowledge via social networks, Internet search engines, and healthcare guides and apps. Against this backdrop, we will discuss the change in the doctor-patient relationship as well as the changing roles of doctors and computers, and the resulting business models.
Horst Hahn, Andreas Schreiber

20. Smart Energy

The digital transformation in the energy sector
A successful energy transition is inconceivable without extensive digitization. In view of the complexity of the task of digitizing the energy sector and all of the associated systems, previous efforts at defining essential components of digitization (such as concretely usable reference architectures and research into the resilience of the future energy system) currently still appear insufficient and uncoordinated. These components include smart management approaches capable of integrating market mechanisms with traditional management technologies, and comprehensive security concepts (including effective data utilization control) that need to go far beyond the BSI security profile for smart meters. The digitization of the energy system needs to be conceived and operated as a transformation process designed and planned for the long term with reliable milestones.
Peter Liggesmeyer, Dieter Rombach, Frank Bomarius

21. Advanced Software Engineering

Developing and testing model-based software securely and efficiently
Software rules them all! In every industry now, software plays a dominant role in technical and business innovations, in improving functional safety, and also for increasing convenience. Nevertheless, software is not always designed, (re)developed, and/or secured with the necessary professionalism, and there are unnecessary interruptions in the development, maintenance, and operating chains that adversely affect reliable, secure, powerful, and trustworthy systems. Current surveys such as the annual World Quality Report put it bluntly, directly correlated with the now well-known failures of large-scale, important and/or safetycritical infrastructures caused by software. It is thus high time that software development be left to the experts and that space be created for the use of current methods and technologies. The present article sheds light on current and future software engineering approaches that can also and especially be found in the Fraunhofer portfolio.
Ina Schieferdecker, Tom Ritter

22. Automated Driving

Computers take the wheel
Digital networking and autonomous driving functions mark a new and fascinating chapter in the success history of automobile manufacture, which stretches back well over a century already. With powerful environment recognition, highly accurate localization and low-latency communication technology, vehicle and traffic safety will thus increase dramatically. Precise, fully automated vehicle positioning of autonomously driven electric cars creates the conditions for introducing innovative high-current charging technologies located underground. If autonomous or highly automated vehicles share information with intelligent traffic controls in future, then this may lead to a significantly more efficient utilization of existing traffic infrastructures and marked reductions in traffic-related pollutant emissions. These are three examples that underscore the enormous significance of electric mobility together with autonomous driving functions for the development of a truly sustainable mobility. In this process, the range of scientific-technical challenges in need of a solution is extraordinarily broad. Numerous Fraunhofer institutes are involved in this key development process for our national economy, contributing not merely expert competencies at the highest scientific-technical level, but also practical experience in the industrial implementation of high technologies. In what follows, we take a look at some of the current topics of research. These include autonomous driving functions in complex traffic situations, cooperative driving maneuvers in vehicle swarms, low-latency communication, digital maps and precise localization. Also, security of functions and security against manipulation for driverless vehicles, digital networking and data sovereignty in intelligent traffic systems is considered. Finally, range extension and fast-charging capabilities for autonomous electric vehicles through to new vehicle design, modular vehicle construction and scalable functionality is addressed. And even though the automobile sector is the focus of our attention here, it is worth taking a look at interesting Fraunhofer developments in autonomous logistics transport systems, driverless mobile machines in agricultural engineering, autonomous rail vehicle technology, and unmanned ships and underwater vehicles.
Uwe Clausen, Matthias Klingner
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