Human hand and robot hand


Sign Language Translation Mobile Application and Open Communications Framework
1 January 2021 until 1 January 2024
Project type

Irish sign language is used by 5,000 people, nearly 87,000 people use British sign language, around 5,000 people use Flemish sign language and more than 10,000 people use Spanish sign language. Dutch sign language is used by around 13,000 people in the Netherlands. To facilitate the communication between hearing, deaf and hearing-impaired people, the SignON project is developing a smartphone application that can translate sign language into spoken and written language and translate these back again.  

Automatic speech recognition

The SignON EU consortium has 17 partners. The project’s current focus is the Irish, British, Dutch, Flemish and Spanish sign languages and the English, Irish, Dutch, and Spanish spoken languages. Technologists at Radboud University’s Centre for Language and Speech Technology are concentrating on the automatic speech recognition of these languages. For a number of languages, the technologists will also focus on the automatic recognition of speakers with a cochlear implant, which allows those who are severely hearing impaired to hear again. 

The automatic translation system will also need to be suitable for other languages. Behind the scenes, work is being carried out on AI, the integration of which will facilitate the addition of other sign languages and spoken languages. The project has drawn attention to inclusiveness by working with deaf and hearing-impaired communities, including the European Union of the Deaf. This means that the app can be developed on the basis of the needs of the users, who can then evaluate the system straight away.



Contact information

More information on this research study? Questions from the media may be directed to the science editor. All other questions may be directed to the researcher.

This website is still under construction. More information: 'a new website'.