Our recent blog, Industry Innovation: Getting Up to Speed With 5G, just scratched the surface of the paradigm shift coming to industries across the Resource Erectors’ board. For years now we’ve been hearing about 5G and maximizing the potential for futuristic ideas including Industrial 4.0, edge computing, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and more.
Sure, the 5G providers such as Verizon, T-Mobile, Huawei, and other 5G telecom builders around the globe were quick to pitch the hypothetical benefits of 5G. But we expect that kind of enthusiasm from any service-providing vendor. So in this article we’re doing a deeper dive into the 5G rollout coming to a company near you.
We wanted to go beyond the hypotheticals and marketing hype surrounding 5G and look at some real-world use cases, and we weren’t disappointed.
5G Makes Industry 4.0 a Reality
“5G in a manufacturing context is not about making use of publicly available 5G connections as used by consumers. No, 5G for industry is about constructing custom-made, private 5G networks that essentially bring alive the idea of an Intelligent or ‘smart’ factory.” 29 top 5G use cases: discover what 5G can really do – Nicola Brittain- 5Gradar.com
Increasing device handling from 4G’s limited 100,000 per square kilometer to next-generation 5G performance at 1,000,000 devices/sq km, with troublesome latency (data transfer delays) down to a single millisecond opens the door to URLLC (Ultra-Reliable Low Latency Communications). The experts are reporting that current 5G latency is down to 10 ms already, a vast improvement over 4G, and hitting the 1-millisecond benchmark is just around the corner.
With every machine in the plant connected via IoT sensors, the “smart factory” brings to life Industry 4.0 concepts with high-precision assembly lines using robots, machines, and humans working in perfect real-time synchronization to boost production. All while increasing safety with RTP, or Real-time Transport Protocol.
RTP is also the quick connecting, real-time reliability needed for dependable trustworthy autonomous (self-driving) vehicles. Not to mention the fleets of airborne delivery drones envisioned by Amazon and Verizon.
“Verizon’s plan is to enable as many drones as possible to be connected and to transmit video footage in real-time but also to relay back other intelligence such as levels of stock in a warehouse situation.”
5G Jargon You Need to Know
And that’s a reminder for us to get you up to speed on the latest abbreviations and shorthand for understanding the most current 5G shop talk. You’ll want to be prepared when the 5G vendors come calling.
The list below is provided by Ericsson, a 5G provider working in collaboration with digital technology leader ABB to optimize 5G in industrial settings. ABB is an industry leader in SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) for remote plant management and 3D design and monitoring applications for construction, utilities, and mining operations.
- 3GPP – 3rd Generation Partnership Project
- DECOR – dedicated core network
- E2E – end-to-end
- FEC – forward error correction
- IP – Internet Protocol
- IR – infrared
- LTE – Long-Term Evolution
- MWC – Mobile World Congress
- NFV – Network Functions Virtualization
- NX – Ericsson’s 5G air interface initiative
- RAN – radio-access network
- RTP – Real-time Transport Protocol
- SCTP – Stream Control Transmission Protocol
- SDN – software-defined networking
- SLA – Service Level Agreement
- SRTP – Secure RTP
- TTI – Transmission Time Interval
- UDP – User Datagram Protocol
- UE – User Equipment
So we see what the immediate future holds for the destiny of 5G but how are the field trials going? Check out the results when one Australia-based construction company teamed up with Cradlepoint and Telstra for a 5g rollout test last October of 2020.
Australia-based Taylor Construction Demonstrates 5G In-field Applications
Would you believe WAN (Wide Area Network) speeds that deliver 20x performance gains over 4G? Australia’s Taylor Construction is logging results that are “setting a new standard for 5G-enabled high-tech applications for the enterprise.”
“The Cradlepoint 5G solution, enabled by the Telstra 5G network, has transformed our ability to employ high-performing enterprise-grade applications, top to bottom,” Christian Neyle, IT manager- Taylor Construction.
And what were those “top to bottom” enterprise-grade applications?
- Holographic Building Visualization — “Smart glasses” worn on-site render a virtual model of the building such as holographic structural steel, framing, or electrical schematics.
- Wide-Area Safety Scanning — 360-degree 8K streaming uses QR code scanning from wireless cameras for digital induction tracking. This improves risk management by ensuring every person on the site has completed safety training, verified by an automated process.
- IoT Concrete Pours — Smart sensors on rebar and embedded in concrete aggregate send data to the Cradlepoint router, then to the cloud. Taylor supervisors can determine if concrete is poured correctly and track any shifting of the concrete later on.
- Real-Time Design Display — The ability to make changes to digital blueprints in real time and display on tablets and large monitors on site.
- Large-Site Failover — Eliminate expensive back-up fiber lines with 5G, gaining fiber-like speeds with the diversity of a wireless connection.
Blast and Go Production in Mining
“The ability to move driverless equipment into place quickly, say following a blast, is a potential time-saver when people are not permitted into the area until fumes have cleared. Benefits like this, combined with the fact that mines are typically found in remote locations, have led the mining industry to become an early adopter and developer of remote machine operation.” – Industrial Remote Operation- Ericsson
With the exploding demand for battery and magnet metals surging by up to 10x over this decade, 5G is the right tool at the right time.
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