top of page


Mr. John Smith

Job title



Worldwide, regions are on the verge of collapse due to an ongoing urbanization and an increasing number of cars. To relieve overcrowded roads, future urban mobility has to become more flexible and more efficient. The idea of transmodular mobility is to change and share different transportation carriers within a higher-level transportation system. This enables and combines the efficient use of different carrier systems like railways, buses, ropeways or aircraft and increases passenger convenience. Practically, this would mean that different transportation carriers share the same kind of passenger cabins. For instance, a passenger cabin can perform as a bus to reach small and narrow streets and for particular tracks, it would transform into an urban ropeway to benefit from its higher passenger throughput. However, the critical part of this transformation is the coupling process. Therefore, reliable coupling interfaces are required which must be precisely aligned to perform a successful coupling procedure. In this regard, reliable sensor systems are required which can provide precise positioning data of the coupling interfaces for their counterparts.

Conventionally, automotive sensors for range detection purposes either consist of radar or sonar-based systems. Automotive radars are known for a comparable large detection range and can cover up to hundreds of meters. However, the resolution is typically in the range of a few centimeters and even more. Sonar-based systems feature less detection range and are mostly used for short-range detection of obstacles in direct proximity to the sensor. Due to their high resolution and low production costs, they are used for a wide range of park assist systems. Nevertheless, what conventional radar and sonar-based sensor systems have in common is that they do not distinguish between particular obstacles without further signal processing. This means, objects around the sensor can be detected but cannot be identified. However, object identification can be achieved by more advanced systems like LIDAR, camera-based or radar-based imaging techniques. This, in turn, comes with an increasing amount of signal processing and production costs.

This paper presents a new concept of a positioning sensor system for transmodular mobility without the need for complex image and signal processing capability. It is based on a sonar system approach, in which the transmitting nodes and receiving nodes are separated. Thereby, the transmitting node can serve as a reference point on the target object (e.g. passenger cabin) and the receiving node can be placed on the locating object (e.g. transportation carrier), respectively. In this regard, both objects are related to each other in a local reference system. The sensor system is extended by an auxiliary radio link for synchronization purposes. It can cover a range of more than 5 meters with a maximum positioning resolution in the millimeter range.

Mr. David Bierbuesse, RWTH Aachen University, GERMANY; Mr. Eduard Heidebreicht, RWTH Aachen University, GERMANY; Mr. Tobias Meinert, RWTH Aachen University, GERMANY; Mr. Mauricio Chaves-Vargas, upBUS UG (haftungsbeschränkt), GERMANY; Prof. Dr. Renato Negra, RWTH Aachen University, GERMANY; Prof. Dr. Kai-Uwe Schröder, RWTH Aachen University, GERMANY

Positioning Sensor System for Transmodular Mobility

F2020-ACM-042 • Event Paper • FISITA Web Congress 2020 • Automated and Connected Mobility (ACM)


Sign up or login to the ICC to download this item and access the entire FISITA library.

Upgrade your ICC subscription to access all Library items.

Congratulations! Your ICC subscription gives you complete access to the FISITA Library.


Retrieving info...

Available for purchase on the FISITA Store


bottom of page