LuxTurrim5G Smart City ecosystem extending
Published 7.11.19 | Sami Huuskonen
Nokia, together with a multidisciplinary group of companies and research groups, is creating the digital backbone of the smart city and new data-based services. In the second phase of the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem project, the recently developed 5G smart pole concept is moving towards productization and practical piloting. Another major goal is to create a platform utilising a wide variety of data in a reliable and secure way, and to develop new digital services to meet the real needs of cities. This includes evaluating and piloting a neutral host operating model for high-speed city networks. Through an intensive two-year, EUR 26 million co-development effort, the group of 26 partners targets global smart city markets worth tens of billions of euros.
Nokia-driven LuxTurrim5G smart city ecosystem extending
The first phase of the LuxTurrim5G project, which ended in May, successfully developed the 5G smart pole concept, which integrates a 5G base station, weather and air quality sensors, and video cameras, and monitors electric vehicle charging units and other active devices. The good results and the first pilots at the Nokia campus in Espoo, Finland, have attracted a lot of interest around the world and given the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem a boost for further expansion.
A number of new companies are joining the second phase of the development, and altogether 26 partners and well over a hundred experts in various fields are working closely together to develop and evaluate new solutions in, for example, 5G radio technology, data processing, materials, sensors, and urban design. New service concepts and business models are being developed for transport, logistics, energy management, urban infrastructure, health and safety, and network operations.
This extensive joint development coordinated by Spinverse consists of two closely related projects: LuxTurrim5G+ focuses on the productization of the smart pole concept and extension of the 5G smart pole pilot network in the Kera neighbourhood of Espoo, while the neutral host pilot project focuses on data-driven business and service development, intelligent network construction, and operation models.
“Both mobile operators and cities would like to have a common data platform, which does not yet exist. We now have a great opportunity to join forces and bring together smart light poles and a data platform to boost the sustainable development of urban areas”, says the LuxTurrim5G ecosystem leader, Juha Salmelin from Nokia.
LuxTurrim5G network forms the digital backbone of the smart city
5G technology is expected to revolutionise many fields. Smart cities are eagerly waiting for 5G networks for super-fast connectivity and huge amounts of online data, enabling the new services they need. Building a dense 5G network based on smart light poles, however, brings new challenges and opportunities. New operating models are needed for smart city infrastructure planning.
“Using these new information flows, we enable people to act in a smart and ecological way in an urban environment, including in its planning, design, and construction. We bring new kinds of predictive information to hand concerning city functions, such as the status of infrastructure, the air quality indoors and outdoors, how to avoid traffic jams, and the safest route to walk to school”, says Jyrki Keinänen, CEO of AINS Group.
Together with AINS Group, companies like Sitowise, Caruna, Destia and the City of Espoo are involved in the planning and implementation of a novel city infrastructure. The pole development, in turn, is driven by Tehomet and Orbis. Modern urban planning tools developed by Sitowise, including 3D city models and digital twins, enable efficient data utilisation already during the construction phase. The co-construction of electricity and telecommunications networks, driven by Caruna, brings cost efficiency, speed and functionality.
Mobilising data – widely and reliably
The LuxTurrim5G smart pole network creates the digital backbone of the smart city. It provides a high-speed communications platform and creates an extensive sensor network that can collect a wide range of different data, for example, on the environment, traffic, weather, and energy usage. This is important in building comprehensive situational awareness for the city. In addition, cities already have a large amount of their own data available that could be used to develop a variety of useful new services. The aim of the project is to create a data platform capable of receiving, handling and enriching these large masses of data from various sources in a reliable and efficient manner for use cases. In this project, one area of research is the neutral host operator model, where a “neutral” local operator takes care of building and operating the urban 5G network and providing a data platform for service providers. The rules of the data market are a key issue that will also be addressed by researchers at VTT, Aalto University and the University of Helsinki. The project aims not only to investigate different scenarios and business models, but also to pilot the neutral host operating model in practice in the Kera neighbourhood of Espoo.
“Neutral host models could allow the cost-efficient building of 5G network services in cities and along transport routes. Building out 5G extensively will probably require new approaches to, for example, business models and infrastructure sharing between operators, as well as telecom and spectrum regulation enabling these new solutions. We see clear socio-economic benefits in co-operative models of building the future digital infrastructure”, says Heidi Himmanen from the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency Traficom’s 5G Momentum ecosystem.
New digital services for the smart city
Smooth mobility, transport, and logistics are one of the major everyday challenges that will make the smart city breathe at the right pace and save time and costs. The GACHA Robot Bus by Sensible 4, recently named the world’s best start-up for self-driving vehicles, utilises the high-speed 5G network and contributes to the expansion of the sensor platform. Vediafi and Agora Networks, in turn, together with VTT, are developing new solutions for last-mile logistics to ensure efficient supply chains in a city. Urban planning and new operating models and services related to construction is a development area being taken forward by Sitowise and A-Insinöörit. New energy solutions and services are being developed by Caruna. Driven by Vaisala, weather and air quality data are widely utilised to develop specific services for traffic management, energy management, and preventive health. Link Design, in turn, brings service design as part of the joint work. From a city perspective, comprehensive, up-to-date, online situational awareness of, for example, safety, environmental, traffic, and energy issues is a major new opportunity provided by the smart light pole network with its high-speed 5G connections and extensive database, gathered by the wide sensor network and Teleste’s video management solutions.
“We are delighted to continue the productive collaboration with Nokia and the research consortium to roll out dense observation networks and digital air quality mapping and forecasting to create healthy, resilient, and efficient urban environments”, says Erik Sucksdorff, head of strategy and business development for Vaisala’s Weather and Environment business area.
Smart and green Espoo – aiming for a smooth, healthy, and safe everyday life
Espoo aims to be Europe’s most sustainable city and carbon-neutral in the 2020s. Clean technology solutions will be developed and implemented with partners to support sustainable growth. Together with businesses, the city is at the forefront of smart urban development, climate work, and the circular economy. The Kera area will undergo major changes in the 2020s.
“The new Kera is the first place on the city railway line to build the smart city of the future. There is a need for sustainable urban development that can be enabled by digital platforms. Together with our partners, we are actively developing smart and clean solutions that enable sustainable growth”, says Jukka Mäkelä, Mayor of Espoo. “An intelligent city is being built in Espoo in a population and customer-oriented way. The goal is a smooth, healthy, and safe everyday life”, Mayor Mäkelä continues.
The Kera area will be transformed into an urban and smart district with at least 14,000 residents and 10,000 jobs. There are already large corporate headquarters in Kera, and the new change is beginning with the revival of silent and crumbling industrial halls for temporary use. Kera will be built into a pearl of sustainable urban development and an international reference point where the city, together with its partners, will create new, clean and intelligent solutions that make life easier for residents. The LuxTurrim5G ecosystem plays an important role in Kera’s development. The modern Kera, which will be built in the coming years, will provide a significant pilot basis for new smart city solutions, which will also pave the way for larger international projects. Espoo’s role as a UN model city for sustainable development contributes to this. The first pilot phase, to be completed by the end of this year, will provide a network of 15 smart light poles covering the route from Nokia’s campus to Kera railway station, also supporting a self-driving robotic bus service. Next year, the plans already include the first international pilots.
The LuxTurrim5G ecosystem consists of two parallel projects funded by the participating companies and Business Finland:
Nokia Bell Labs: project lead, 5G radio technology and networks
Spinverse: project and ecosystem coordination
Premix: specific materials for antenna radomes
Teleste: city safety and information solutions
Vaisala: environmental and weather-related services
Indagon: positioning technologies and services
Ensto: luminaires, electric vehicle charging
Rumble Tools: drones, drone docking station and services
Orbis: cabling, connections, integration
Tehomet: smart pole design and manufacturing
L7 Drive: battery back-up, energy management
Destia: street lighting and infrastructure
Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT): radio technology, positioning, connectivity platform development
Aalto University: radio technology, thermal/energy management, design
Tampere University: mechanics and sustainable materials development
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