German operator 450connect picks Nokia to build its network
Finnish vendor Nokia has signed a contract with 450connect, a joint venture backed by German companies from the energy and water sectors, to build its nationwide “LTE450” radio network.
In a release, Nokia said that the agreement will cover the supply of radio system technology for the 450 MHz network, including the central technology, radio stations, microwave radio links for the backhaul network, and power back-up systems.
Under the terms of the deal, Nokia will also manage the supply and performance of all LTE components, including maintenance services, until 2040.
In March 2021, 450connect was awarded 450 MHz frequencies until 2040 by Germany’s federal network agency Bundesnetzagentur (BNetzA). The 450 MHz allocation will be used to establish a Germany-wide, highly resilient and secure LTE radio network for applications of energy and water utilities and other critical infrastructures.
Nokia also noted that its LTE450 technology is ideally suited to achieve wide-area coverage and operate services such as voice and machine-to-machine communications (M2M) or IoT applications for critical infrastructure. This industrial-grade private LTE / LTE-M solution is optimized for M2M applications and critical voice communications, the Nordic vendor added.
Carsten Ullrich, CEO of 450connect, said: “In view of the major challenges involved in setting up the 450 MHz platform, we are pleased to have Nokia as a strong and capable partner at our side for the long-term, with whom we can meet the high technical requirements of our customers as operators of critical infrastructures.”
“The task of digitalization of Germany’s critical infrastructure is of enormous strategic importance. Nokia can make an important contribution to securing this country’s energy supply with our industrial-grade 450 MHz private LTE network, especially considering the challenges posed by the energy transition to decarbonization and decentralization. We look forward to a trusting and close cooperation with 450connect on this long-term and important project for the Federal Republic of Germany,” said Dirk Lewandowski, vice president for Central and East Europe at Nokia Enterprise.
Nokia said that the agreement stipulates that the initial end-to-end tests will take place in the field by mid-2022 to ensure performance for the upcoming rollout. Radio services will be offered in the first regions of Germany in 2023, while the nationwide rollout will take place by 2025.
The Nokia solution includes geo-redundant LTE cores, RAN network, Nokia Wavence microwave radio backhaul, management solution and installation, commissioning, integration, training and support services. Nokia also said that 20 years of lifecycle network management of this critical network will be provided under this agreement.
450connect is backed by more than 70 utilities, including Alliander, E.ON, a consortium of regional energy companies and the Versorger-Allianz 450, which includes several public utilities, energy and water suppliers with the participation of the EnBW-subsidiary Netze BW.