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‘AI AI Captain’: 5G takes to the waves with automated ferry in Norway

Ericsson, Telia and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) have partnered to show that you don’t need wheels, or roads, to benefit from 5G-enabled driverless transport. 

The 5G-connected autonomous ferry milliAmpère crossing Trondheim’s harbor canal
The 5G-connected autonomous ferry milliAmpère crossing Trondheim’s harbor canal

The partners have successfully demoed a small connected passenger ferry, with an AI captain, in the Norwegian fjord city of Trondheim.

The autonomous ferry, named milliAmpère, transported passengers across Trondheim’s harbor canal. Ericsson 5G technology enabled Telia to securely support the large amount of data transfers needed to support the autonomous ferry. 

MilliAmpère is equipped with sensors that record its surroundings and the steering system on board. This generates large amounts of data that needs to be communicated with the control center.

Jenny Lindqvist, Head of Customer Unit Northern and Central Europe, Ericsson, says: “Ericsson’s world leading 5G technology and its ability to upload large amounts of data in a short time was key to the success of the pilot. Ericsson’s 5G Radio and superior software enables upload speeds of more than 200Mbps and download speeds above 1Gbps.”

Egil Eide, associate professor at the Department of Electronic Systems, Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), says: “The data is analyzed so that the vessel finds its way itself and avoids any obstacles, and at the same time the distance to the quay is measured so that the boat can safely moor itself.”

“In the event of a sea emergency, the vessel can also be remotely controlled from the control center at Gløshaugen via the same mobile network.”

Ericsson, has been working on autonomous vehicles powered by 5G all over the globe, Ericsson has also partnered with Telia to highlight  the environmental benefits of self-driving vehicles..

Ericsson currently has more than 75 commercial 5G agreements or contracts with unique communication service providers, of which 24 are live networks.

Related links:

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Find out more about Ericsson 5G use case trials

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