Industrial communications are mostly based on wired industrial networks, a configuration that is inflexible and complex. In the FUDGE-5G vision, most of the components on the industry floor such as controllers, robots, or automated guided vehicles (AGVs) need to be wirelessly connected. In this context, 5G is emerging as a key connectivity solution, as many of its features are tailor-made for Industry 4.0 applications.
For this reason, our partners in FUDGE-5G have considered the Industry 4.0 use case as a cornerstone in the project. The use case will demonstrate the applicability of 5G Non-Public Networks (NPNs) and their integration with 5GLAN and Time Sensitive Network (TSN) to replace fixed and wired alternatives for industrial communications with 5G.
The project is currently developing an end-to-end 5G infrastructure tailored for this type of services in an industrial environment. In particular, the ABB factory located in Oslo will be the target location. The objective is to deploy a network that meets challenging low latency, ultra-reliability, and high security requirements. This network will be used in four different applications: remote monitoring as a service, remote control as a service with real-time feedback, 5G integration and adaptability in industrial environments, process control over 5G, and a fifth optional application on VR/AR control over 5G.
Partners from the consortium are contributing to the use case with their last innovations in core network, core management, radio, or user equipment, among others. These components are currently being developed and integrated in the infrastructure. A first test is expected this year. The testbed will target a standalone NPN within a controlled environment where the applications and their requirements can be validated.