Nokia and UTS open the door to a 5G future with new research facility

15. 11. 2021 Monday / By: Robert Denes / Industrial / Exact time: BST / Print this page

Equipped with the latest 5G products from the award-winning Nokia AirScale radio portfolio and optical and IP technologies, the 5G Futures Lab powers campus-wide 5G coverage to allow for the development, testing and demonstration of potential 5G use cases both in the lab, and in the field.

15 November 2021

Sydney, Australia – Nokia today announced the opening of its state-of-the-art 5G Futures Lab, officiated by the Hon. Paul Fletcher, Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) Tech Lab campus in Sydney, Australia.

Equipped with the latest 5G products from the award-winning Nokia AirScale radio portfolio and optical and IP technologies, the 5G Futures Lab powers campus-wide 5G coverage to allow for the development, testing and demonstration of potential 5G use cases both in the lab, and in the field.

During a tour of the UTS Tech Lab facilities, guests were able to experience the first of these joint Nokia UTS research collaborations - the ‘5G Connected Cobot’ project, one of 19 recipients of the Federal Government’s 5G Innovation Initiative grants announced in August 2021. Here, researchers will explore how 5G and Edge Computing can be used to offload the processing power of a Collaborative Robot (Cobot) into the Nokia Edge Cloud, demonstrating power and cost savings to the Cobot operation through an extended battery life, as well as access to a much more powerful processor at the Edge to increase its capabilities.

Guests were also shown through the 5G Futures Lab by a 5G connected ProxyTwin™ of Nokia Oceania’s CTO Dr. Robert Joyce running on a Temi Telepresence Robot. Using the 5G and Edge Compute capabilities seen in the Cobot project, the ProxyTwin™ engaged in live conversation with the Minister and guests, responding to questions about the facilities and 5G in real-time. It was created for Nokia by Sydney start-up ProxyTwin to demonstrate the exciting potential of 5G-powered artificial intelligence applications. When combined with 5G, the ProxyTwin™ application can offer new use cases for industries such as remote health, education, call centre, aged care, tourism and hospitality, and emergency management.

The 5G Futures Lab is equipped to showcase the best of 5G technology available today, providing insight into the future of 5G. Featuring the largest permanent collection of Nokia Radio, IP and Optical equipment in Oceania, the lab is also directly connected to UTS’ large Antenna Chamber, where Nokia can test the potential of its latest 5G radio technologies such as the Nokia 5G Smart Node, recently launched into the Australian market.

The Hon. Paul Fletcher, Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, said: “I congratulate everyone at Nokia and UTS involved in this wonderful example of collaboration between business and academia. I’m very pleased this joint initiative is now officially open and I look forward to seeing what will come out of it in the future.”

Professor Glenn Wightwick, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Innovation and Enterprise, said: “UTS is delighted to be working with Nokia on the 5G Futures Lab. Industry collaborations such as these allow our academics and students to work with state-of-the-art technology and real industry problems, in turn inspiring the creation of new applications and businesses.”

Dr. Robert Joyce, Chief Technology Officer at Nokia Oceania, said: “We’re excited about this partnership with UTS and what we can achieve together. Here at the 5G Futures Lab we can push the boundaries of 5G, developing new 5G use cases for industry and consumers as well as testing the latest innovative Nokia products for our customers.”

Notes to editors:

Nokia’s FastMile 5G Fixed Wireless Access and WiFi Beacon products are used to enable 5G Wi-Fi coverage around the 5G Futures Lab. Nokia's IP and Optical technology will be used to provide the high speed connections between the Radio, Core and Edge nodes within the lab and across the wider UTS Tech Lab campus. Nokia Digital Automation Cloud (Nokia DAC) will also be used in the development of 5G use cases for industry, in particular those where remote connectivity presents a challenge such as in mining, defence, emergency services and remote health.

Nokia, UTS and their commercial partners will also use the 5G Futures Lab to explore the capabilities of 5G Advance (an enhance version of 5G) and candidate 6G technologies for Industry 4.0 applications such as industrial automation, smart agriculture, smart energy and human-robot interaction.

The 5G Futures Lab is located at the UTS Tech Lab facilities in Botany, Sydney and is open to Nokia customers, partners and invited guests.

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