The new generation 5G network is a huge and wide application, especially in a business that requires reliable communication, high bandwidth and low latency. Orange decided to introduce the technology to companies even before it became popular in our country.
For the purpose of the presentation, Orange 5G Laboratory was established, where access points to the 5G network at a frequency of 3.6 GHz – a network called the campus network. It was established a year ago as the first business application in the Lodz Special Economic Zone and at the Miele washing machine factory in Ksaverov and the Nokia factory in Bydgoszcz.
Julien Ducarroz, President of Orange Poland:
5G will be a very important impetus for the future development and dynamic digitalization of the Polish economy. We are actively involved in this process by creating the first campus networks with our customers. Orange 5G Lab is a place where we develop and test 5G solutions, as well as collaborate with startups and provide innovative business solutions.
At Orange 5G Lab, we had the opportunity to see several booths showcasing the capabilities of target 5G. You will see them in detail in the attached video we have mentioned in this lab of the future, I will try to briefly describe them to you.
Training using 5G and virtual reality (VR)
At the virtual reality station in the above-mentioned washing machine factory, I could personally test how an employee could be trained without having to set up a special station or involve other people in the training.
In fact, this can be done in a small space and can equip a new employee with VR goggles that download the training program from the network and guide the trained person step by step throughout the process. From learning how to use the program to the specific activities that a particular employee will then perform on a real machine.
I could take each item, see it, put it aside, and then transfer it to a virtual machine that collects the individual elements of the washing machine. I must say that I had an almost full-fledged training to assemble the drum in the washing machine, almost 1: 1, as in real life.
Augmented Reality in Training (AR).
In turn, the augmented reality companies can be used in “battle” conditions or in the field with real machines. All you need, for example, is a program that digitizes all the infrastructure in the company, all the machines, devices, including every cable connected to it.
A novice employee should not use any paper instructions that he does not have to take with him to get acquainted with him, a smartphone or tablet with a camera is enough. With this camera we scan a given element that is automatically recognized by the program and shows detailed instructions for each element.
Augmented reality is also useful for work in an area where you can, for example, hire a new employee with smart glasses equipped with a camera and screen. If there is a problem in the field, such an employee can contact someone more experienced in the company, who later sees the problem on his computer screen, take a screenshot of the scene, describe the problem there, or point out a defect that needs to be repaired and show it to the employee. send.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) video analytics
At the Artificial Intelligence (AI) stand, we were shown what a quality and safety control system in the workplace looks like using a camera system installed in a room.
For example, we use it in a washing machine factory, where these cameras are installed on a production stand, and a special algorithm analyzes the individual processes. If at any stage of production it is found to be defective – for example, the absence of a screw, this washing machine is different from the removal of subsequent processes so that the defective one does not leave the factory.
During workplace safety checks, the algorithm can be programmed to identify areas where you can move freely in a certain area, have no access to selected vehicles at a certain distance, or move without protective clothing. In case of violation of the established rules, the system immediately sends a warning to the persons responsible for safety in the workplace.
Autonomous mobile robots
Equally interesting is the use of autonomous mobile robots, which can be used to transport various items in production halls or warehouses and control them at a computer station – by showing him on a virtual map the specific points he has to go with them.
For example, when a certain worker finishes one of the products at a production station, it is enough to record it in a system that will call a robot that will transport it to the warehouse or further processing without the need to involve workers.
The robot is equipped with a 5G module that provides uninterrupted communication with it. It also has an internal sensor system and recognizes obstacles in the distance, simply avoiding them when approaching someone or encountering an employee passing by.
Drones serve industry, agriculture and forestry
The protagonist of the last task in the Orange 5G Laboratory was a giant unmanned aerial vehicle with a hybrid driver who was able to work in the field for 5 hours non-stop. This allows it to be sent back and forth on a mission of up to 180 km.
Michał Polewiak, Development Strategy Expert at Orange:
The connection was important due to the ability of drones to carry and collect large amounts of data and the development of a 5G network that greatly facilitates navigation in residential areas.
They can be used in security companies, urban and forest monitoring, monitoring the technical condition of heating pipelines, or during excavations. Depending on the application required, it may be equipped with appropriate sensors and scanners prior to a mission.
For example, a thermal imaging camera was installed on the drone while checking the condition of the heating pipe. In turn, hyperspectral analysis was used to check the condition of the vegetation – to measure the electromagnetic radiation reflected over a wide range of spectra. This allows not only to check which trees are sick, but also to find out which specific disease.
All of these and similar missions provide a large amount of information that is then processed in the Orange Cloud. Companies that decide to rent such a drone from the operator receive E2E (End-to-End) service. In addition to the drone itself, Orange also provides it with appropriate sensors, and it receives a ready-made analysis and report within 48 hours, which answers questions asked by a particular company.
Why 5G Companies? WiFi is not enough?
As a summary of this presentation, I will probably answer a question that came to you as it was in his time. Why 5G when we have WiFi? The new generation network is definitely more reliable, along with higher bandwidth and lower latency, because it provides the uninterrupted connection necessary in production processes and requires less infrastructure.
Orange installed a 5G network at the above-mentioned Miele washing machine factory and provided a connection in one of the salons with an area of 6,000 square meters. m2, it was enough to install only four access points inside, so that a continuous connection with the same parameters can be used anywhere in the room.
If such a hall will use a WiFi connection, such access points and signal amplifiers will have to be installed more access points, and this will still often be insufficient, and the moment of loss of connection – even for a moment. For example, with the autonomous mobile robot presented here, in this case, its next independent path will be impossible and will require physical intervention of the employee.
These are, of course, just examples of applications, in the future Orange together with its partners plans to expand the range of services provided using 5G, as well as with the participation of startups invited to the development part. Orange 5G Lab. They will be able to create, test and develop innovative services and solutions using 5G with the support of Orange experts and other components such as 5G mobile network, Edge Computing solutions, IoT platform and communication modules, routers or cameras. Orange will provide them.
The effect of this work can then be presented in the salon (this is the part we visited with the camera), which should facilitate its subsequent commercial application and with it to reach potential customers.
The article was written in collaboration with the Orange operator.