US military trials 5G network at Pearl Harbor base

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US communications company Verizon has been awarded $11.5 million to develop 5G for the US military.

The US Department of Defense is funding Verizon to build a private 5G network inside an aircraft maintenance hangar at a military base in Hawaii.

The project is part of a US government scheme to test 5G use cases across military installations. The hanger is located at the Pearl Harbor, made famous for the Japanese attack there that brought the US into World War 2.

As part of the pilot network design at the base, which supports both US Air Force and US Navy missions, aircraft maintenance personnel will look at ways of incorporating 5G connectivity into foreign object detection (FOD), airplane maintenance as well as other uses.

If the pilot proves successful the US military may rollout 5G networks at other bases. According to a report in Mobile World Live, the Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson will serve as a partner on the project, with a private 5G portfolio that includes core and RAN network equipment to the test site.

This is not the first time the US military has trialed 5G, with US communications company AT&T this summer announcing that the US Navy was using its private 5G network at a naval base in San Diego to explore the use of smart warehouse services.