Lufthansa Technik is working with Vodafone and Nokia to test its own private 5G networks on two separate projects. One enables clients to remotely join the airline’s engineers in real-time inspections of engine parts; the other project applies live AR/VR to overlay cabin interior designs onto a real empty fuselage, allowing engineers to check the design and position of every component.
Private 5G networks meet Lufthansa’s demand for very high bandwidth rates and avoid lost service connections when switching between Wi-Fi cells over the large hangar area. The standalone network also allows sensitive data to be processed in real-time, on-premise, using multi-access edge computing. Operators can play different roles here; in this instance, as a service and technology partner, Vodafone supports the 5G network during both activation and operation. In the 5G era, expect to see private networks become an increasingly common feature of the industry landscape, either as network slices provided by mobile operators or, in this case, as discrete standalone networks.