5G networks will change many industries, including manufacturing driving the future of Industry 4.0 and smart manufacturing. The smart factory is now tangible for many industry sectors. But the ability to cope with increased bandwidth, latency requirements, big-data generated from more connected equipment and the data processing required on the factory floor is a massive challenge for 5G implementation.
Last year the UK government announced its biggest investment in 5G for manufacturing to date – a £9m ($11.7m) project to install a private 5G network at the National Composites Centre (NCC) in Bristol. The multi-partner project, called 5G-Encode, is exploring new business models for private 5G networks in industrial settings and testing new 5G technologies, such as network splicing and slicing, in a real working environment. It is also examining the practical application of 5G wireless technologies to improve composite design and production processes.
Led by Zeetta Networks the project was officially launched in early 2020 and it will run until March 2022, by which time commercial 5G deployments are expected across a variety of manufacturing sites in the UK. The project is part of the Industrial 5G Testbeds and Trials programme being run by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).
“5G is about more than consumers getting faster and more reliable speeds,” said DCMS secretary of state, Oliver Dowden. “We’re determined to harness this revolutionary technology to boost the productivity and growth of UK industries. We want Britain to be a world leader in 5G and since 2017 the government has invested millions in ground-breaking testbeds and trials across the country to achieve this.”
Overcome 5G implementation issues
Increased heat generation due to the use of higher voltages and high-capacity data transfer in communication base stations.
- Increase in capacity to transfer tera or even peta level of data throughout the net requires high energy.
- Data processing in high-speed communication age means increase in heat generation from devices.
- With improved noise immunity, devices are now used in wider range of environments.
Issues & Solutions
5G base stations require higher voltage and therefore devices involved generate more heat. From a safety standpoint, it is critical to have stable and reliable operations under such conditions, which means more evaluation tests are required:
- Power cycle test
- Reverse bias test
- High-voltage insulation evaluation
- Capacitor temperature characteristic evaluation test
- Electromigration/inductor evaluation test
- Capacitor leakage current evaluation test
- Conductor resistance evaluation test (joint reliability test)
Each of these 5G issues/solutions has an associated test chamber associated on our website. See 5G Reliability Testing.