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Ericsson opens fresh seam of 5G tech in Sweden

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Ericsson has built a 5G network as part of a project to improve productivity and safety in the Swedish mining industry.

The vendor said a mix of new and existing technology will be used to remotely drive a truck that is used to transport ore.

Ericsson is working with a consortium of companies comprising engineering company ABB, mining company Boliden, SICS Swedish ICT and Volvo Construction Equipment. The trial is part of the vendor's wider 5G for Sweden project, which it launched at Mobile World Congress.

The mining trial aims to increase productivity and safety by using low latency and high reliability mobile technology.

Sara Mazur, Vice President and Head of Ericsson Research, said: "We are eager to research the challenges faced by the mining industry. The idea is to identify areas where mining operations can be improved through the use of mobile communication."

Torbjörn Lundahl, Program Manager for 5G for Sweden, added: "The successful implementation of such technology could and should lead to improved safety. More connected machines and devices mean fewer people will be required to work underground. The seamless integration of over- and underground activities will help improve safety and productivity, as well as enabling better monitoring and remote control."

Meanwhile, Ericsson has launched a new cloud lab in Italy to drive network functions virtualisation and software defined networking.

The lab is located in Rome although Ericsson said operators will be able to access it virtually from any of the vendor's global premises. Ericsson said it will allow operators to test cloud infrastructure and see how it can be designed and fitted into its existing network.

Nunzio Mirtillo, Head of Region Mediterranean, Ericsson, commented: "Cloud will enable the biggest evolution of the telecom business and this new lab is an example of Ericsson's passion for driving innovations in Italy".

"As great ideas come from collaboration, operators can turn cloud-based approaches to their advantage and implement new architectures that provide network efficiency and shorter time to market for innovative services."

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