Signaling the dawn of a new era for smart industrial machines and systems, GE Research, the technology development arm of the General Electric Company (GE), is collaborating with Verizon Business to create a cross industry testbed powered by Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband.
Vic Abate, GE’s Chief Technology Officer, said “Together with Verizon, we are leading the way in innovating on 5G. It marks a pivotal moment for the industrial world, as we finally have a wireless network platform that delivers the speed, scale, reliability and flexibility to connect industrial devices in a truly transformative way.”
“Verizon’s 5G platform capabilities provide the perfect testbed for GE’s research team to build the next-generation, real-time solutions that will transform every industry,” said Tami Erwin, CEO of Verizon Business. “There’s never been a more critical time to build the 21st century infrastructure built on mobility, broadband and cloud and our 5G sits right at the epicenter.”
5G is the next generation network that finally boasts the high speed and low latency that is required to dynamically manage industrial machines, systems and operations. The speed of 5G Ultra Wideband is at least 10 times faster than 4G and up to 4 Gbps under ideal conditions in some locations.
GE Research’s 5G Mission Leader, Dr. SM Hasan, likened the speed and scale of a 5G network to being able to have thousands of people in a room at one time running internet apps on their mobile devices without any delays. “If you’ve ever been in a public area like an airport and experienced a slow Wi-Fi connection, it’s because the network is experiencing heavy traffic that slows everything down.”
Verizon’s 5G will eventually be capable of connecting one million devices per square mile, which is 10x greater than 4G. Hasan added, “For us, it’s about enabling thousands of assets to be managed in real-time at one-time. 5G’s speed, scale, and near-instantaneous response time are opening new levels of capabilities in the management of assets and operations that engineers previously could only dream of using.”
“The superior network speed and capacity of 5G networks will allow us to take full advantage of a multitude of digital technologies to transform industrial assets and operations,” Hasan added. “From AI and machine learning to digital twins and autonomous technologies, 5G can accelerate the path to everything from self-driving cars and digital health to more resilient, reliable energy grids powered by more carbon-free energy assets like intelligent wind farms.”
Verizon already has begun the process of installing its 5G Ultra Wideband network on GE’s Research campus. Eric Tucker, Sr Director of Technical Products at GE said: “We are excited to work with the GE businesses and key partners like Verizon and the U.S. Department of Defense to translate Research to Reality and showcase the power of digitally connected and 5G enabled solutions for our customers, and the world”.