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Wednesday, 23 October

Ordnance Survey's 5G Mapping Tool

Ordnance Survey has been chosen by the Department of Culture, Media & Sport to develop a planning and mapping tool that will be instrumental for the national rollout of 5G technology.

OS will lead a consortium that includes the 5G Innovation Centre and the Met Office, and together they will be building a ‘digital twin’ of the real world, which will be used to determine the prime locations to place the radio antennae (access points) necessary to enable a 5G network.

The planning and mapping tool will be trialled in Bournemouth and if successful rolled out across the rest of the UK.

Surveying for parts of Bournemouth is already underway and will be used to generate the new model. The intelligent mapping tool trial will support the town’s aim to build on its success as Digital Council of the Year 2015 by becoming one of the first places in Britain to have 5G coverage.

Minister of State for Digital and Culture, Matt Hancock said: “Our ambition is to be a world leader in 5G technology, which is why we are investing in research and demonstration initiatives like this groundbreaking 5G mapping pilot. It is projects such as this which will make sure the UK can harness the potential of this exciting technology and help build the hyper-connected Britain we all want to see.”

OS Commercial Director, Andrew Loveless, said: “The purpose is to deploy 5G quickly and efficiently. Linking OS data to spectrum information and meteorological data will deliver faster speeds and better coverage to connected devices, all the while helping keep rollout costs to a minimum. ”

Higher frequencies also mean much larger amounts of data can be sent and received and is vital to the future success of new tech concepts, including Smart Cities, the Internet of Things (IoT) and driverless vehicles.

Discovering where to best place the large amount of equipment required for a national 5G network would be a very time consuming and costly exercise of trial and error, but with the data visualisation tool OS will create, the vast majority of the work could be done from a desk. Included in the model’s intelligence are weather conditions, tree foliage and the lifecycles of vegetation, and details of future building projects, all of which gives planners the opportunity to test broadcast range and reliability throughout the seasons and over the coming years.

Picture: The 3D analysis of Bournemouth help predict how buildings will interfere with 5G signals

 

Article written by Cathryn Ellis

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