Maritime 5G Technology Would Revolutionise Shipping

LTE, WIFI and 5G Massive MIMO Communications in Maritime Propagation Environments or MAMIME in short is a programme developing the first 5G communication network for the maritime sector. It is funded by the Norwegian Research Council.

The project aims to develop a robust global 5G network for use by the shipping sector which would allow enhanced use of Internet of Things (IoT) to push for increased automation at sea. The network is also expected to improve ship to shore, ship to ship and search and rescue communication. Once fully developed, the technology shall allow the deployment of autonomous ships at sea. These ships would be able to spend more time at sea as compared to manned ships and thus improve productivity and reduce cost of operation.

Yara Birkeland Autonomous Ship

The MAMIME has partnered with Super Radio AS, which is the Pre-5G test solution provider for the small-version Yara-birkeland autonomous ship, which is regarded as the world’s first fully electric and autonomous container ship. Discussions are also on in the maritime sector for development and deployment of remote pilots. These are pilots, who shall not embark the cargo ships when they are entering harbour, but will provide pilotage services remotely from shore. Autonomous tugs are also being developed which can help ships berth without human intervention.

Another major activity in progress is the development of common standards which will allow various 5G and wireless systems used in the maritime sector to communicate with each other. This has the potential to provide a seamless interaction between ships, ports, logistics companies and customs for a faster and more efficient movement of ships across oceans.

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