Research Activity Projects (self-financed)

ATHENA – Assistive Technology Helping Elderly iN-place Ageing

October 2010 – now

ATHENA provides methods and tools to support the elderly to preserve their independence by ensuring security (physical and perceived), monitoring and communication to both them and their families. The project is highly innovative with respect to the current system of social welfare, in that it implements the mechanism of “mutual tranquillity” (monitoring and communication) and the paradigm of behavioral compensation” (monitoring, analysis and intervention).

BRIDGe – Behaviour dRift detection and compensation for autonomous and InDependent livinG

October 2010 – now

The BRIDGe project aims at achieving the AAL goals enabling a strong connection between the person living independently at home and her social environment (e.g., family, caregivers, third sector organizations, proximity network) by implementing a system, centered around the user, which can provide focused interventions according to the identified person’s needs. BRIDGe is specifically targeted to elderly, mild cognitive or physically impaired people and, more in general, to fragile people, i.e., people whose weakness threatens autonomy, health or important aspects of life. Specific psychological conditions, disabilities or limited capabilities are examples of weaknesses that can make a person fragile according to the previous definition.


Current Projects

MEP – Maps for Easy Path


LINK to the MEP site:

September 2017

MEETmeTONIGHT is a version of the European Night of Researchers, which is celebrated across Europe, where the population is put in contact with the themes and the protagonists of research and innovation.
MMT 2017 – Como – Scuola secondaria di 1° Grado “Emilio e Pia Prandoni” – Torno (CO) Italy

October 2014 – October 2016

MEP is a two-year project of Polisocial (a program of social responsibility and commitment of Politecnico di Milano), which aims to develop a set of innovative tools and solutions for the enrichment of geographical maps with information about the accessibility of urban pedestrian areas for people with mobility problems.

Two APPS are available on the Google Play Store:

  • MEP Traces: With MEP Traces you can automatically trace your path and it will be reconstructed with good precision. MEP- Traces has been designed to be used by people with motor disabilities , with the idea that if the person is able to do a path, that path may be considered accessible and be shared with other people having the same type of disability.
  • MEP App: MEP App is the app that allows you to display on a map the accessible routes collected through MEP-Traces. Through MEP-App anyone can also denounce impediments and/or malfunctions through messages or pictures; you can also enrich other accessibility information: for example, you can also signal parking lots for disabled people and accessible transport.
Ottobre 2014 – Ottobre 2016

MEP è un progetto Polisocial (un programma di impegno e responsabilità sociale del Politecnico), che ha l’obiettivo di sviluppare un insieme di strumenti e soluzioni innovative per l’arricchimento di mappe geografiche con informazioni relative alla percorribilità pedonale urbana per le persone con problemi di mobilità.

Due APPS sono disponibili su Google Play Store:

  • MEP Traces: MEP-Traces è l’app che permette di rilevare in modo automatico il percorso effettuato dalla persona e di ricostruirlo con una buona precisione. MEP-Traces è pensata per essere utilizzata dalle persone con disabilità motorie, con l’idea che se la persona riesce ad effettuare un percorso, quel percorso può essere ritenuto accessibile ed essere condiviso con altre persone aventi lo stesso tipo di disabilità.
  • MEP App: MEP App è la app che consente di visualizzare su una mappa i percorsi accessibili raccolti attraverso MEP-Traces. Attraverso MEP-App chiunque potrà inoltre denunciare impedimenti e/o malfunzionamenti attraverso messaggi o fotografie; si potranno arricchire anche altre informazioni sull’accessibilità: ad esempio, si potranno segnalare anche parcheggi per disabili e fermate e mezzi di trasporto accessibili.

Past Projects

ALMA – AAL Joint Programme

April 2013 – April 2016

ALMA is an international project with the following participants: Scuola Universitaria Professionale della Svizzera Italiana (Switzerland), Politecnico di Milano (Italy), Infosolution SpA (Italy), VCA Technology Ltd. (UK), Istituti Sociali di Chiasso (Switzerland), Clinica Hildebrand (Switzerland), University of Wuerzburg (Germany), Degonda SA (Switzerland)
Among the difficulties that old age and disability force upon people, those related to mobility have an especiallyhigh impact on quality of life and psychological well-being. The Alma project tackles the issue of not being able to move autonomously or effectively by combining a set of advanced hardware and software technologies into an integrated and modular system composed by: (i) an indoor localization system based on a network of low-cost/low-power RF emitters, to provide room level localization of people and objects; (ii) an ad-hoc, autonomic hw/sw system based on networked smart cameras providing accurate indoor and outdoor localization and environment monitoring; (iii) an intelligent system for the online planning of users’ paths according to their specific needs, matching these with the actual state of the environment and the available resources; (iv) a personal mobility kit for electric powered wheelchairs allowing them to perform automatic or assisted navigation and, additionally, to interact with the surrounding environment (v) a personal navigation assistant sporting user-friendly interface to all the functionalities of the system, tailored to the specific user-defined requirements and physical limitations (e.g., vocal and tactile interfaces, ad-hoc devices). Alma users will be supported in their mobility to acquire knowledge about interesting locations (e.g., services, people, facilities, etc.), to select and follow an efficient and safe path to such destinations considering their needs and/or limitations or the status of the environment, to present the resources provided by intelligent environments to the users so they can effectively access them with familiar instruments without feeling disoriented or overwhelmed by technology. Alma will bring to the mobility of a wide range of primary end-users a real advancement, that will be measured in terms of the most appropriate metric: their own feeling of freedom and increased empowerment. At the same time secondary end-users, e.g., residences and hospitals, will leverage on the information collected by the system on the movements of their guests to monitor their ageing, to design personalized support services or rehabilitation paths.


Cluster SHELL

Shared and interoperable domestic ecosystems for sustainable, comfortable, and secure living ambients

Cluster Shell is a national project with the following participants: Università Politecnica delle Marche, Politecnico di Milano, Telecom Italia e diversi consorzi aziendali tra cui Homelab (BTicino, Teuco, Ariston, Indesit et al.). Politecnico is working on the following,
Models for the sharing and pre-processing of information to support AAL technologies
The goal of this activity is to model, analyze and monitor in time the comfort level, in the broad sense of phyco-physical wellbeing, of the house guest. This aims at the integration of services that could provide her with assistance in the short and long period (e.g., services and solutions of Ambient Assisted Living for the Active Aging).
Development of systems for the sharing of information coming from AAL technologies
This activity aims at modeling and integrating with the devices in the house information coming from AAL technologies for the Active Aging and for the help of fragile people.


159623Giugno 2013 – Dicembre 2015

La crescita dell’aspettativa di vita nella nostra società comporta un allargamento delle fasce di popolazione potenzialmente più fragili, come persone anziane e persone con disabilità. Un esempio, per la sola Regione Lombardia, per il 2043 si prevedono 3,5 milioni di ultra sessantacinquenni contro gli attuali 2 milioni (un aumento del 75% in meno di trent’anni) mentre sul territorio nazionale, la percentuale degli ultra 65enni passerà dall’attuale 20% del totale della popolazione (12 milioni di persone) ad una percentuale superiore al 32% nel 2043. In tale prospettiva, per garantire il più alto grado possibile di qualità della vita, risulta essenziale implementare soluzioni integrate ovvero modelli di intervento che coinvolgano una molteplicità di attori secondo logiche interdisciplinari.
L’approccio proposto si basa su una strategia che prevede l’integrazione e l’interazione tra soluzioni di Ambient Assisted Living e le reti sociali (associazioni, cooperative di riferimento, servizi socio-sanitari), oltre che con le persone di più stretta connessione affettiva. La forza di questa sinergia sta nel riuscire a coniugare la capacità delle reti sociali di raccogliere ed analizzare i bisogni delle persone fragili con le capacità di innovazione e tecnologica dei soggetti preposti alla ricerca.

Il termine fragilità identifica una condizione di rischio e di vulnerabilità caratterizzata da un equilibrio instabile di fronte a eventi negativi; questa condizione può insorgere per motivazioni molto differenti e comporta degli alti costi sia in termini economici che sociali. Inoltre la società in cui viviamo ci espone ad innumerevoli rischi le cui conseguenze si vanno a sommare a quelle derivanti dal naturale processo di invecchiamento: il repentino mutamento delle condizioni economiche, i cambiamenti nel mercato del lavoro e degli assetti familiari ci portano a riflettere sulla necessità di individuare nuove vie per sostenere la fragilità anche alla luce della recente crisi del welfare italiano. Fra le conseguenze socialmente più rilevanti di questo processo vi è certamente la difficoltà di poter condurre una vita quanto più possibile autonoma.

Il progetto ADALGISA: casa amica, sicura e smart si inserisce perfettamente in questo contesto con l’obiettivo strategico (che rappresenta anche – e non solo – un importante fattore competitivo sul mercato imprenditoriale) di creare una piattaforma tecnologica capace di offrire strumenti flessibili, personalizzabili e integrati con azioni di tipo sociale e relazionale a supporto dell’abitare il più possibile autonomo delle persone con fragilità.

In particolare il progetto si prefigge di creare le condizioni per promuovere il miglioramento della qualità della vita delle persone con fragilità e dei loro familiari attraverso una piattaforma tecnologica inclusiva, parametrica e adattiva che coinvolga sia l’abitazione che l’ambiente socio-familiare-sanitario. L’obiettivo è di fornire nuove possibilità di comunicazione, interazione, monitoraggio e intervento nei confronti della persona con fragilità che vadano oltre i limiti determinati dalle distanze e che siano attuabili con efficacia ed efficienza di costi sull’intero territorio regionale. Nello specifico, il progetto si propone di:

  • Sviluppare una piattaforma tecnologica con costi limitati che include: un sistema domotico a sostegno delle autonomie individuali altamente configurabile, un’infrastruttura di monitoraggio dell’ambiente domestico per il rilevamento di parametri di posizione e ambientali, un’infrastruttura per la comunicazione e gestione degli allarmi e degli interventi da parte del contesto socio-familiare-sanitario ed un’interfaccia software ad hoc per supportare l’autonomia degli anziani nel contesto abitativo e nella comunicazione con la rete socio-familiare. La parametricità e adattività dell’intero sistema permettono, a partire dalla analisi delle caratteristiche dei soggetti con fragilità, di identificare quali requisiti debba soddisfare la piattaforma tecnologica sia in relazione all’interazione con l’utilizzatore, sia rispetto alle strutture di intervento/supporto e ai familiari/amici/tutor, in modo da definire il progetto socio-tecnologico più opportuno;
  • Analizzare la relazione fragilità-strumenti (sia tecnologici che sociali e di servizio medico) per costruire intorno alla persona con fragilità un’infrastruttura che ne promuova l’autonomia e l’inclusione sociale, per ridurne la sensazione di solitudine e abbandono;
  • Promuovere il protagonismo delle reti territoriali esistenti, di associazioni di persone anziane e di persone con disabilità, in connessione con le altre espressioni del terzo settore e le pubbliche amministrazioni; promuovere la loro collaborazione nella fase di definizione progettuale e nella sperimentazione, sviluppando la loro capacità di partecipazione alla gestione del servizio;
  • Sperimentare in situazioni su casi reali il prototipo di piattaforma tecnologica oggetto del presente progetto.

ADALGISA: The Safe, Friendly, and Smart House

June 2013 – December 2015

The increase in life expectancy in our society implies an expansion of the portion of the population that is potentially more fragile, such as elderly and disabled people. For example, only for Lombardy Region, the number of persons 65 and over is estimated to be 3.5 million in 2043 with respect to the current 2 million (an increase of %75 in less than thirty years) while at national level, the percentage of persons 65 and over will go from the currently %20 of the total population (12 million) to a percentage more than %32 in 2043. With such a prospect, it is essential to implement integrated solutions, that is models of intervention that engage a range of actors with an interdisciplinary approach, in order to guarantee the highest possible level for the quality of life.
The proposed approach is based on a strategy that considers the integration and interaction between two solutions of Ambient Assisted Living and Social Networks (associations, reference cooperatives, socio-sanitary services) in addition to the persons with tightest affective connections. The strength of this synergy lies in the combination of the social network’s capacity for collection and analysis of the needs of the fragile people with the innovative and technological capacity of the researchers.
Fragility identifies a condition of risk and vulnerability that is characterized by an unstable equilibrium in front of negative events; this condition could arise for different reasons and implies high both economic and social costs. Moreover, the society in which we live puts us at countless risks the consequences of which are to be added to the ones derived from the natural process of aging: sudden alterations in economic conditions, the changes in the labor market and family assets make us think about the necessity to find new ways to support fragility also in the light of the recent crisis in Italian welfare. The difficulty to conduct a most possible autonomous life is one of the most relevant social consequences of this process.
The ADALGISA: Safe, Friendly, and Smart House Project lies perfectly in this context with the strategic goal (that represents also – and not only- an important competitive factor in the entrepreneurial market) of building a technological platform capable to offer flexible, personalizable, and integrated tools with social and relational functionalities in support of a most autonomous life possible for the fragile people.
In particular, the project aims to create the necessary conditions to promote the improvement of the quality of life of people with fragility and their families through an inclusive, parametric, and adaptive technological platform that takes into account both the living and socio-familial-sanitary environments. The goal is to provide new opportunities for communication, interaction, monitoring, and intervention towards the person with fragility that go beyond the spatial limits and that are feasible and cost-effective in the whole regional territory. Specifically, the project aims to:

    • develop a technological platform with limited costs that include: a domotic system in support of the individual independence that is highly customizable, a monitoring infrastructure of the indoor environment to measure locational and environmental parameters, an infrastructure for communication and management of the alarms and interventions from the socio-familial-sanitarial context and an adhoc software interface to support the independence of elderly in their living environment and in their communication with the socio-familial network. Configurability and adaptability of the whole system allow, after analyzing the characteristics of fragile subjects, to identify the requirements that should be satisfied by the technological platform both in relation to the interaction with the user and in relation to the support/intervention structures, family members, friends, and tutors, in a way to define th most appropriate socio-technological project;
    • Analyze the the fragility-tool (technological, social, health service) relation in order to construct an infrastructure around the fragile person that promotes his/her independence and social inclusion, and that decreases the feeling of loneliness and abandonment;
    • promote the visibility of the existing territorial networks, associations for the elderly and for disabled people, in connection with other manifestations of the third sector and public administration; promote their collaboration in the project definition stage and in experimentations, developing their capacity in participation in service management;
    • experiment the prototype of the technological platform that is the subject of this project on real cases.

GoALL – Going towards solutions for Ambient Assisted Living

Alta Scuola Politecnica ASP

The Alta Scuola Politecnica (ASP) is a school for young talents, with a passion for innovation, who wish to develop their potential in a multidisciplinary community. Students from Politecnico di Milano and Politecnico di Torino collaborate with AUS Niguarda ( to provide solutions for disabled persons with motor impairments that have to interface with objects/services of common use.


The AutonomaMente project developed a highly customizable application based on multimodal communication (speech, icons, text) to support autonomous living of persons with cognitive disabilities in special apartments fitted with domotic sensors. Its functionalities are designed to support everyday social activities of the users: using the telephone in a simple way, schedule appointments, keep track of time and organize personal finances and savings. The implemented solution can effectively support people facing some difficulties deriving from their impairments (like, for instance, reading/writing difficulties, sequencing problems and long/short term memory impairments).
Funded by: Fondazione Cariplo


P300 wave based Brain Computer Interface (BCI)

Communication is a core aspect of the human life, since it makes us able to share concepts, information and needs. In patients afflicted by pathologies likeAmyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) an interruption of communication ability occurs: the patient must use Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC) aids to recover this capability. Due to the progress of the disease, the patient’s abilities keep reducing, till complete paralysis. In that condition the only interface able to provide a communication channel is Brain Computer Interface (BCI). In the following we will present a P300-based BCI, integrated in a project implementing a remote monitoring system for ALS patients.



Localization And Ubiquitous monitoRing of pAtients for health care support

Several efforts try to improve quality and effectiveness of health care services leveraging Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). Recent achievements in the broad fields of device miniaturization and wireless communication technologies have opened up enormous opportunities to design ubiquitous and pervasive systems for remote patients monitoring and tracking. Project LAURA has been stimulated by the specific needs of a nursing institute, “Fondazione Eleonora e Lidia”, specialized in the assistance of critical patients. The goal of the project is the design of a lightweight system integrated in the institute’s environment for monitoring and localizing patients suffering from epileptic disorders.
The system is composed of three building blocks: a distributed Personal Localization System (PLS) to localize the critical patients within the institute’s boundaries, a wearable Personal Monitoring System (PMS) to capture the motion of the patients, and a lightweight wireless network architecture for the distribution of the collected information (patient’s position and status) remotely. Remarkable feature of the overall system are the accuracy of the collected information (status and position), and the non-invasiveness in the institute’s environment.
This whole system is critical mission, though the original version did not provide any kind of dependability mechanism. Furthermore, being the most crucial device wearable, the possible sources of fault include also the user (who might forget – or not willing – to wear it). The ATG (Assistive Technology Group) of Politecnico di Milano have thus being working on a method to provide concurrent fault detection to this system. In order to reach this objective they analyzed the possible solutions, and evaluated them in terms of cost and provided functionality. The chosen system, providing a sort of hardware redundancy, is based on of-the-shelf home sensors (the ones used already for alarm plants) detecting the persons’ movements (PIR – Passive InfraRed – Sensors) and the opening-closing of doors and windows. Building a model of both the system, in order to understand when the behavior deviates from the expected (and sampled data become inconsistent), they were able not only to detect failures caused by hardware natural faults (e.g., wearing) but also when the person is not carrying his/her device anymore.
Funded by: Politecnico di Milano