To make HIT the main and integrated Research Pole in the fields of Transport, Sustainable Mobility and Tourism in Greece and among the top 10 relevant nodes of technology and expertise in Europe.

Sector A logo

Department A: – Human Factors and Vehicle Technology

Head of Department: Dr. Maria Panou
Deputy: Dr. Maria Gkemou

Research & Scientific Staff: M. Panou, M. Gkemou, I. Benekos, L. Gaitanidou, I. Alertas, C. Britsas, E. Chalkia, I. Gragopoulos, M. Karvelli, V. Klimi, P. Liapis, M. Loukea, S. Nikolaou, M. Maglavera, S. Mouratoglou, A. Spiliotis, I. Simeonidis, A.Tamvakos, K. Touliou, I. Tsetsinas, K. Vitzilaiou.

This research Sector deals with all vehicle and driver issues (including PTW riders and VRU’s), the design, development and assessment of vehicle systems and components, taking into consideration personalization, driver/rider/VRU safety, behaviour and driver/rider (user)-vehicle interaction, as well as accessibility and “design for all” issues.

The main research lines of Sector A include:

  • Applications of Cooperative - Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) as regards the driver and the vehicle and the development of interfaces as regards the information/warning of the users (drivers, riders, VRUs),
  • Introduction and integration into the traffic system of Clean vehicles technologies (the “clean” vehicles, i.e. electric, fuels cells, hydrogen),
  • Applications for all types of autonomous vehicles and algorithms for vehicle-driver control transition optimisation,
  • Driver/rider, VRU and instructor’s training schemes ad actions,
  • Advanced driver/rider and vehicles’ simulation systems,
  • Systems and services for Vulnerable Road Users and Vulnerable to Exclusion travellers,
  • Road Safety for the driver/riderand VRU,
  • Risk Assessment  towards resilient transportation systems,
  • User Interfaces and HMI for the driver/rider, traveller and VRU, through mobile and wearable gadgets.
  • Dissemination and optimisation for the promotion and improvement of the accessibility and MaaS for the driver/rider and VRU.
  • Policy issues, measures and roadmaps.
  • Systems and tools evaluation and impacts estimation studies.


Laboratory A1: –Road Safety and Security
Head: L. Gaitanidou

This lab develops and evaluates systems for the safety and security promotion of the driver – vehicle system (all vehicles with emphasis on road vehicles), including applications of Information and Communication Technologies (within the Intelligent Transport Systems context) in these areas.

In particular, within the above context, Laboratory A1 is involved in:

Developing and studying driver/rider behaviour models, as well as tools and processes for its improvement in terms of safety (i.e. multimedia tools and driving/riding simulators for training), books and educational content related to life-long training in safe transport of all road participants.
Performing research on specific road participants categories needs (such as elderly persons, children, persons with disabilities, etc.),developing methods and supporting concepts/systems for them. In relation to this, it also works on issues related to:

  • Driver/rider and road participant cognitive, mental and behavioural models;
  • Comfort and ergonomics of in-vehicle systems;
  • Biomechanics and bio-kinetics of road users;
  • Promoting road safety in general, through educational-training campaigns for the drivers, studies for the safe use of road infrastructures as well as their evaluation in terms of safety audits, etc.
  • Security issues for vehicles and road users.

Experiments/Pilots in lab, driving and riding simulators and real traffic conditions using the available research demonstrators with all types of road participants for assessment of novel systems, services and applications with regard to road safety.

In the frame of its work on safety, this Lab also conducts work in:

  • Vehicle automation systems (focusing on user acceptance and user experience aspects);
  • Relevant policy issues, measures and roadmaps (i.e. safety strategic master plan, action plans, etc.);
  • Safety and Security impact assessment of new measures/systems.

Laboratory A2:  Clean and Autonomous Vehicles
Head: M. Gkemou

This lab focuses on supporting the development and evaluation of clean and autonomous vehicle applications/functions, individual technologies and their spare parts as well as the study of incentives and policies for promoting their market uptake and use. Clean vehicles are viewed in relation to both the type of fuels used as well as to the driving /usage behavior (i.e. eco-driving issues). Autonomous vehicles of all SAE levels are considered (from 1 to 5).

The lab is responsible for data collection and assessment related to use of alternative fuel vehicles, their support infrastructure and the use of innovative fuels, as well as issues of vehicle-infrastructure communication and fueling.

It also works on autonomous vehicle applications for all types of vehicles (truck, bus, car, PTW, new vehicle types, etc. at all levels of automation) with emphasis on optimal control transition between driver and vehicle, their conspicuity and communication by other road users and the technical validation and user-oriented evaluation.

Indicatively, the lab works on issues, such as:

  • Clean vehicles of all types and their fuelling/operational infrastructure (in cooperation with Laboratory C4 Environmental impacts of Transport system);
  • Evaluation and impact assessment of clean vehicles and green (eco) driving/riding services and practices;
  • Algorithms for energy consumption minimization of clean vehicles;
  • Ergonomics of clean vehicles and intelligent systems for vehicle-infrastructure interactions.      
  • Autonomous vehicles of all types, emphasizing on control transition aspects.
  • Implementation and validation/assessment of functions for autonomous vehicles.                  

Laboratory A3:  Industrial design, Intelligent Materials and Manufacturing in Transport
Head: M. Gkemou

This lab deals with the use of intelligent and novel materials in transport, with emphasis on nanotechnology and material sciences applications, the design, development and fabrication of electronics and embedded systems for intelligent transport as well as with innovative production and maintenance practices in transport.

Indicatively, its applications include the following aspects:

  • Applications of micro and nano sensors, implementation and assessment of s/w and h/w components and materials (particles) for use in transport systems and applications.
  • Use of novel materials (i.e. carbon-nano-tubes, new steel types, etc.) in transportation systems.
  • Electronic systems design, development and fabrication for vehicles.
  • Embedded systems design and development for intelligent transport applications.
  • Software and firmware development to  support vehicle’s electronics.
  • New production concepts and systems applications in transport such as the “Do-It-Yourself” (DIY) personalization, “kansai” and “citarasa” as well as lean production concepts.
  • Μethods and systems of non-destructive control as well as their condition monitoring for all types of vehicles and their parts.
  • Integrated methods and tools for vehicles and other transport elements life-cycle analysis and monitoring.

Laboratory A4:  Personalized and Accessible Systems and Services
Head: M. Panou

This lab develops and evaluates mobility enhancement applications for the individual traveler in terms of personalization, inclusiveness, accessibility and respect of “design for all” principles.

The Lab A4, cooperates and contributes to the work of the Lab B1 (Demand management and development of mobility systems) but focuses on personalization and accessibility of services and systems for the individual drivers/riders as well as all travelers and their relevant assessment and acceptance levels by all users.

Indicative areas of interest and applications include:

  • Algorithms and systems for personalized ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems) and intelligent vehicle systems/applications.
  • Systems and applications for specific traveller groups (elderly, travellers with disabilities, illiterate and digitally illiterate, etc.).
  • Application of universal design  principles in transportation systems and services.
  • Accessibility assessment of any new transportation system and application.
  • AI and deep learning algorithms for the development of personalised services.

Laboratory A5: Risk Analysis and Resilience
Head: I. Benekos

This lab focuses on Risk Assessment of human errors and vehicle malfunctions in order to develop resilient systems vis a vis human and/or vehicle performance degradation as well as the impact of natural and manmade catastrophes. Main activities also include:

  • Integrated Risk Assessment through the analysis of technical, behavioural, legal and operational risks and their impact to transportation safety as well as the development of mitigation strategies for them.
  • Analysis of external factors impact (ie from natural or manmade catastrophes) as well as their combined effects to the above defined human/vehicle related risks, to develop robust and resilient transportation systems (with emphasis on vehicle and travelers equipment).
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