ALMA aims to support the autonomous mobility, navigation, and orientation of the mobility-impaired person (elderly and/or temporarily or permanently disabled person) through the realisation and combination of a set of advanced hw/sw technologies into an integrated and modular cost-effective system composed by: (i) an indoor localisation system based on a network of low-cost/low-power RF emitters, to provide room level localisation of people and objects: (ii) an ad-hoc, autonomic hw/sw system based on networked smart cameras providing accurate indoor and outdoor localisation, environment monitoring, and situation assessment; (iii) a system for online planning and scheduling of users’ paths and activities, matching users’ specific needs with the state of the environment and of resources; (iv) a Personal Mobility Kit for electric powered wheelchairs, allowing them to perform automatic or assisted navigation and to interact with the surrounding environment; (v) a Personal Navigation Assistant, providing a user-friendly interface to all ALMA functionalities, tailored to the specific user requirements and physical limitations.

Two pilot applications, presenting different scenarios and therapeutic issues for both primary (elderly, rehabilitation patients) and secondary (care givers) end-users will guide project development. They will also provide on-field assessment of the produced technology, both as a fully integrated system and as a subset of interacting modules.


The objective of ALMA is to provide a modular, low-cost, integrated system to support autonomous mobility and orientation for the elder and, more in general, for the person with cognitive and/or mobility impairments. ALMA will develop a set of modules that can work in isolation or in cooperation, for: localisation, tracking, path planning and navigation, service search and scheduling, autonomous wheelchair mobility, and interfacing with the user.

Expected results and impact

The project will results in a set of modules for navigation, localisation, planning, monitoring, and interfacing, that can be assembled and configured according to different needs, budgets, and available resources. The ALMA modules/system will target a number of different scenarios, ranging from the individual use in domestic environments to the multiple and collective use in large care- and assistance-giving facilities, where they can be conveniently integrated with existing hw/sw technologies.


Partners involved in the ALMA project

Organization Type Country Website
Scuola Universitaria Professionale della Svizzera Italiana (SUPSI) R&D Switzerland
Politecnico di Milano, Dipartimento di Elettronica e Informazione R&D Italy
Info Solution SpA SME Italy
VCA Technology Ltd. SME United Kingdom
Istituti Sociali di Chiasso End User Switzerland
Clinica Hildebrand End User Switzerland
University of Wurzburg, Department of Criminal Law, Criminal Justice, Legal Theory, Information and Computer Science Law R&D Germany
Degonda Rehab SA SME Switzerland
  • Project name: ALMA: Ageing without Losing Mobility and Autonomy
  • Website: 
  • Coordinator: Scuola Universitaria Professionale della Svizzera Italiana (SUPSI)
  • Duration: 36 Months
  • Starting Date: 02.04.2013
  • Total budget: € 2.997.526
  • Public contribution: € 1.435.220


Gianni Di Caro


T.: +41 76 2203264

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