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Critical infrastructures such as power plants or public transport (airport, subway, etc.) form the basis for supplying the population with vital services and goods such as transport, energy, water and data.

A failure or impairment can lead to significant disruptions to public safety. These structures include extensive and complex networks of supply shafts (so-called collector passages) extending up to several hundred kilometers. These offer a high risk of incidents, but can also be targets for deliberate manipulation or actions with criminal intent.

The difficult environmental conditions, such as long corridors with small dimensions or limited accessibility, pose particular challenges for the responsible personnel in the prescribed, regular checks of the technical operating conditions (tightness, heat loss, etc.) and the structural substance. In addition, the vulnerability of critical pipe and cable ducts is also of central importance with regard to the terrorist threat.

Attacks on such infrastructures can have fatal consequences. For example, large-scale and long-lasting failures in the power or water supply inevitably lead to enormous costs and even health-damaging consequences for the affected population.

The KIRAS project INFRASPEC is researching new methods to inspect critical infrastructure with the help of robots by subjecting them to a 3D scan.

On the one hand, this is used for automated evaluation and visualization for the operating personnel, on the other hand, it enables a comparison with previous checks. In addition to manipulations, damage to the building structure, leaks, both removed (e.g. safety elements such as fire extinguishers) and added (e.g. forgotten tool boxes, but also potential explosive devices) should be automatically recognized and highlighted in the display.

This supports and relieves security personnel in the prescribed, regular checks.


It also includes the remote-controlled detailed examination using a robotic arm with additional sensors, e.g. on the back of pipes or in the case of unexpected objects, as well as the measurement of any hazardous substances (gas/liquid leaks from pipes, CO2 concentration, etc.).

Project- und Cooperation Partner:

  • Projekt Management:

  - AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH

  •  Bedarfsträger:

  - Bundesministerium für Inneres
  - Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung
  - Wiener Netze GmbH
  - Flughafen Wien AG

  • Industrial Partner:

  - Rosenbauer International AG
  - CBRN Protection GmbH

  • Scieneartner:

  - Johannes Kepler Universität Linz - Institute of Networks and Security

  • GSK-Partner:

  - Disaster Competence Network Austria

The project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF) as part of the KIRAS security research funding program (FFG Projekt Nummer: FO999895182).

Michael Sonntag