Electronic identity documents (e-IDs) in the form of contactless smart cards will in future be more than just proof of identity. They could additionally serve as multi-functional cards that can be used in many other areas of everyday life: for instance, as a public transport ticket, as company ID or as a library card. This is indeed consumer-friendly, but will expose the smart cards to greater pressure than before. In order to adequately address new use scenarios already during the design phase of the smart cards and in order to enable better testing and assessment conditions, Bundesdruckerei, Infineon and the Fraunhofer Institute for Reliability and Microintegration IZM have joined forces as partners in the two-year SeManTiK project ("Secure and long-life e-ID applications for human/machine interaction"). The partnership has resulted in realistic test methods and simulation models and explored new methods of integrating the chip into the card body. More than 35,000 cards were packaged, tested, analysed and evaluated in 20 different test combinations. The new test sequences developed in the project made it possible to obtain extraordinarily reliable and precise confirmation of failure rates and patterns which have been observed in international smart card projects with more than 50 million cards in day-to-day use. "In future, our research results from SeManTiK will thus become part of the work of the international standardisation bodies of the smart card industry and demonstrate Bundesdruckerei's innovation leadership," says Joachim Kloeser, Chief Project Manager and Co-ordinator at Bundesdruckerei. Thanks to SeManTiK, card manufacturers can simulate the life of the documents better than before and adjust the design as required. "If contactless e-IDs are to be used several times a day in future, they must withstand significantly greater stress than before," says Peter Stampka, Initiator and Project Manager at Infineon in Regensburg. "The results from SeManTiK will help to improve the mechanical strength of contactless e-IDs and are therefore also an important step towards achieving parity between the optical and electronic security of ID documents."