Home5G5G-ENCODE launches next phase of industrial private 5G network in the UK

5G-ENCODE launches next phase of industrial private 5G network in the UK

The first phase of the industrial private 5G network focused on testing asset tracking and AR/VR use cases

5G-ENCODE, a collaborative project in the U.K. aiming to establish business cases and value propositions for 5G applications in manufacturing the industry, has turned on the second phase of its industrial private 5G network.

The first phase of the network, launched at the National Composites Centre (NCC) last year, used 4G and was meant as a baseline against which results from the private 5G network will be benchmarked. The first phase focused on testing asset tracking and AR/VR use cases, with results to be announced at a phase two launch event at the NCC in November 2021.

For the second phase, 5G-ENCODE worked with consortium partner Zeetta Networks on introducing network slicing as a key application on the private network. Specifically, the pair — along with other industry partners — created a new network slice by stitching together slices from one transport network and two separate private networks, one located at NCC HQ and the other at another facility at NCCI located several miles away from the first location.

“For the first time in the world, an industrial 5G network can not only be customized and divided into multiple logical networks, but each of those virtual networks can be extended across a transport network to reach another virtual network in a completely different administrative domain,” said Vassilis Seferidis, founder and CEO, Zeetta Networks. Zeetta’s technology enables the ‘stitching’ of the individual network slices to create a new network slice through an easy-to-use-graphical user interface. This ‘end-to-end’ slice delivers continuous connectivity for the seamless delivery of applications across different network domains regardless of vendor or technology. This would allow, for example, a critical asset to be tracked continuously in real-time and with the same quality-of-service as it is transported from the point of production, to being received at the destination location.”

Partially funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport of the U.K. government, the 5G-ENCODE project is one of the U.K. government’s biggest investment in 5G for manufacturing to date. Other consortia partners include the National Composites Centre (NCC), Telefonica, Siemens, Toshiba, Solvay, Plataine, Mativision, the University of Bristol and the West of England Combined Authority (WECA).

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