Friday August 12, 2022

APAC 5G Case Study – 5G Drones Could Keep Ports Operating Smoothly

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Connected drones could play a key role in enabling port authorities to manage their operations and respond to any incidents. In Singapore, mobile operator M1 is working with the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and Airbus to trial 5G-connected drones.

As well as supporting air traffic management, the 5G connectivity can be used to relay video images in near real-time from the drone to a nearby server where video analytics software can be used to monitor the port operations and detect any issues or problems.

In 2020, the four parties began conducting trials on the Singapore Maritime Drone Estate, with a view to developing an open, inclusive and innovative 5G ecosystem around urban air mobility in Singapore. The group are using a 5G standalone (SA) network to enable drones to operate safely and efficiently during all phases of their flights. The 5G SA network is designed to provide secure wide-area connectivity, especially in low-altitude and urban environments where the existing aeronautical communication systems are less effective.

“With 5G, operators have the ability to overlay more value added functionalities, such as providing near real-time features that will work in tandem with video analytics,” says Willis Sim, Chief Corporate Sales & Solutions Officer of M1. “It also provides faster response in surveillance by drones, and videos will be less jittery and much more seamless. With Wi-Fi, there is limited coverage and it is not best suited for outdoor usage. 4G, on the other hand, offers indoor and outdoor coverage support, but with lower bandwidth thus which might lead to jitter and buffering issues when managing large scale drone operations.”

M1 is a member to the GSMA APAC 5G Industry Community. Find out more about GSMA APAC 5G Industry Community: https://www.gsma.com/asia-pacific/communities/ap5gic/.

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