Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation IOSB



Optronic aspects, multimodal surveillance robotics (on land, sea and in the air), development of ultra-modern evaluation methods, support of interoperable standards with the real-time exchange of information for risk detection while simultaneously accounting for data protection aspects already in the system design and assistance in the situation analysis and human-machine interaction in situation centers.


The scientists of Fraunhofer IOSB have already made a name for themselves in the field of security research long before the field attracted the attention of a broad public about five years ago in national and European research programs.


The business unit Security focuses on the security needs of people, companies and official bodies, which wish to protect against natural and intentionally planned hazards, and comprises a broad range of interlinked competencies that deal with sensor sphere optronic aspects as well as multimodal surveillance robotics (on land, at sea and in the air), the development of ultra-modern analytical methods, the support of interoperable standards for the real-time exchange of information for risk detection and management as well as assistance in the situational analysis and human machine interaction in situation centers.


Considering that new technologies are being discussed in controversial manner with respect to conflicting aspects of security needs and the need for freedom, particularly if they are associated with surveillance, IOSB pursues the notion of “Privacy by Design”, which requires that privacy criteria are already accounted for during the design of the system.


The range of services spans studies (e.g. for evaluation) to the realization of experimental systems or prototypes and in individual cases up to and including system development. In typical projects the security researchers of Fraunhofer IOSB support customers in their efforts to improve their competitive position, addressing challenges previously thought too difficult with new product generations featuring innovations from the cutting edge of research.



The business unit Security serves customers from the private and public sector. The former includes, among others, security technology providers, security service providers and operators of properties with critical security profiles. IOSB serves official bodies at the federal, state and municipal level in the public sector, particularly official bodies and emergency services, which aim to identify and evaluate new technologies in order to fulfill their duties.

IOSB is available as a partner for specialized small and medium-sized companies for the development of product innovations and considers itself to be a research resource for companies, which would also like to benefit from new scientific results without maintaining their own research department.
Scientists from the business unit Security often take on demanding sub-tasks in large projects on behalf of large companies.
System integrators integrate IOSB developments in their systems, for example based on licenses.

Prior to or after acquisition of their contracts, security service providers and IOSB discuss the possibilities for further increase in the efficiency and/or effectiveness of their work by means of using new technologies; if necessary, IOSB involves industrial partners for commercial development and 24/7 support of the systems.

Providers of novel high-tech products, which want to offer their own customers assurance with respect to their performance claims, commission IOSB with lab evaluation and benchmarking tests, on the basis of which absolute and/or relative conclusions relating to performance can be drawn.

IOSB experts offer consultation to companies or official bodies, which are preparing large invitations to tender for security systems, particularly when it comes to the issue of relevant new technologies. This particularly includes the evaluation of technologies with respect to their suitability for certain objectives.

Companies that intend to resort to publicly funded research projects in order to enhance their portfolio receive assistance by IOSB when it comes to identifying suitable funding programs and preparing a proposal. During the course of a project, IOSB acts as a research partner. Furthermore IOSB finds funding programs and suitable partners from industry for users in search of new technologies for their fields of activity.

In a technological respect and according to the overall research proposition of Fraunhofer IOSB, methods and systems for image exploitation are a core area, which are for example developed for property surveillance in both indoor and outdoor areas. With its competencies, IOSB handles the entire chain from sensor-sphere data acquisition, sensor carriers and their automatic control for surveillance missions, analysis on an automatic or human-machine basis, multi sensor fusion, and situation analysis up to and including the use of information acquired in this manner for higher-level management support. System design in compliance with privacy protection is an explicit topic of research and part of the consulting portfolio of the business unit Security.


Laboratories and equipment

  • SmartControlRoom as a perceptual room for command center tasks, testbed for person tracking methods, gesture recognition and situational analysis; development lab for smart interaction (multimodal interaction on large displays, cameras, microphones, biometrics)
  • Modular multi-sensor systems AMFIS and AMROS for testing the interaction of ground and air-borne sensor carriers, exploitation and mission planning
  • Laser vibrometry lab
  • Gated viewing lab
  • Technical evaluation system for thermal imaging and night vision equipment
  • Measurement system for reflective properties of surfaces
  • Experimental and demonstration system with highly efficient image-supported remote sensing methods