Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and local telecommunications company M1 Limited are collaborating to integrate 5G technology into the city-state’s first-of-its-kind cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) research testbed.
The partnership’s new 5G testbed is part of the country’s ongoing transition into a global innovation hub for research in connected mobility, where C-V2X communications will be used to enhance safety by relaying real-time traffic navigation and hazard information to users in advance. It can send traffic warning notifications at road junctions, which helps optimize road usage by reducing travelling time and minimizing the risk of accidents. M1 will provide the infrastructure for a 5G connected mobility testbed and trial by deploying three 5G base stations for C-V2X communications at the NTU Smart Campus. The increased capacity and capabilities of the network will deliver ultra-fast and reliable low-latency communications over a wider coverage area. The network’s radio efficiency is further improved by massive Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO) that can support hundreds of sensors on-board vehicles including transport infrastructure such as traffic lights.
The new testbed will also allow industry partners to co-design and co-deploy 5G connected mobility solutions for a range of safety-critical use cases such as collision avoidance, real-time traffic routing, and network security. C-V2X equipment will be installed in shuttle buses and autonomous vehicles (AVs) that are already in operation on the NTU Smart Campus. This enables vehicle localization tests in a real-world environment and 5G network assessment for C-V2X communications. Industry partners will also be invited to explore the integration of this technology with AVs, traffic infrastructure and unmanned aircraft systems (drones).
Supporting Singapore’s push towards 5G urban connected mobility development, the Minister of Communications and Information, S Iswaran, has launched the NTU Connected Smart Mobility Testbed to research, develop, and demonstrate new 5G connected mobility solutions alongside industry. The new US$17.6m (S$24m) testbed, which spans the 200-hectare NTU Smart Campus, pulls together several successful development projects and tests of transportation technologies using the international car-to-car wireless standard for vehicular use.
“We are a world leader in smart mobility solutions and have partnered top companies like Volvo, the BMW Group, the Bolloré Group’s Blue Solutions, and MobilityX, to develop innovative technologies for autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles and multi-modal mobility solutions,” said NTU’s vice president for research, Professor Lam Khin Yong. “As such, the university is in a prime position to accelerate advanced mobility solutions on the NTU Smart Campus, especially the emerging V2X technology. Our partnership with M1 will leverage the ultra-fast 5G cellular communications technology and integrate them into our existing V2X testbed which will enhance overall safety and reliability as notifications can be sent to users almost immediately. A cornerstone in the future of smart transportation, V2X technologies will also optimize road usage by reducing travelling time and minimizing the risk of accidents for a safer and more reliable commute.”
M1’s chief technical officer, Denis Seek, said, “By being Singapore’s first to deploy a 5G network for C-V2X communications, this trial will serve as a live testbed for us to develop our technical competency and strengthen our readiness in harnessing new 5G technologies and infrastructure development.”