Mavenir joins Sunderland smart city project to power ‘transformative’ 5G network
Sunderland City Council’s Smart City project has announced that the 5G-centric network it is building with technology partner BAI Communications will be powered by networks software provider Mavenir.
Mavenir’s MAVedge technology includes the firm’s edge Open vRAN and 5G Packet Core solutions, designed to enable secure private networks to be distributed at the edge.
Communications network infrastructure firm BAI secured a 20-year strategic partnership with Sunderland’s Smart City project last October and the first stage of the project in the Northeast of England city is initially focussed on the development of a city centre 5G private network.
According to Mavenir, however, the network will be designed with the potential to evolve and become a neutral host network capable of providing coverage and connectivity for a range of smart city initiatives.
This network will also enable councils to provide smart services in a more cost-effective manner.
“The objective is to automate operations and flex the scalability in neutral hosting architecture and to prove that it can provide benefits not only to enterprise and business users, but also for the wider community,” said Stefano Cantarelli, chief marketing officer at Mavenir.
“Open RAN is a cost-effective solution which is based on open interfaces and will give us the ability to deploy in a very agile and flexible way,” added Brendan O’Reilly, BAI’s group chief technology officer.
In training and education, the local authority hopes the project will boost online and remote connectivity for schools while in social care research is being conducted to determine how vulnerable individuals can access and benefit from assistive technologies such as sensors and other IoT devices in their homes.
Backed by the Northeast Local Enterprise Partnership and the Government’s Getting Building Fund, there are also hopes that the project could improve logistics and manufacturing operations – including supply chain agility at the nearby Nissan car plant.
Liz St Louis, assistant director of Smart Cities at Sunderland City Council added: “The new network will accelerate the emergence of more smart services including community applications, digital upskilling opportunities and efficiency drives for our advanced manufacturing clusters across the city.”
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