The testbed is part of the 5G-Routes international effort to ensure cross-border automated mobility and has demonstrated its first use case with a teleoperated vehicle simulation.
Latvian network operator LMT has set up a 5G mobility innovation testbed at the Bikernieki racetrack in the capital city of Riga.
Described as the first-ever cross-border mobility simulation space in Europe, the plan is to use Latvia’s LMT and Estonia’s Telia 5G networks to imitate fully functioning international connectivity.
The testbed is a part of the 5G-Routes project, an international effort to ensure cross-border automated mobility, and to develop and demonstrate several 5G-Routes project use cases.
The mobility testbed in Latvia has also demonstrated its first use case where a teleoperated vehicle simulation was conducted remotely over LMT’s 5G network from the town of Cesis 80km away.
“This successful teleoperated vehicle use case demonstration shows that operating automated vehicles on the 5G network is not only possible, but a fast-approaching reality,” said Artūrs Lindenbergs, innovation lead at LMT.
“We believe that thanks to the strong network coverage in the Baltics, the Baltic corridor will be one of the great examples of deploying 5G solutions to enable a smart, cross-border highway for connected and autonomous vehicles.”
According to LMT, to successfully implement automated mobility elements in Europe, the issue of cross-border connectivity needs to be addressed. To do this, Baltic operators have been working in partnership to ensure the smooth transition from operators on one side of the border, to the other, while also ensuring connectivity in the middle. LMT reports this is a technical challenge, as border areas tend to have weaker mobile coverage.
“The Baltic corridor will be one of the great examples of deploying 5G solutions to enable a smart, cross-border highway for connected and autonomous vehicles”
The 5G-Routes project, with a consortium made up of 21 partners, began work in September 2020. The project aims to validate 5G field trials on the via Baltic North 5G cross-border corridor, spanning the borders of three EU countries – Finland, Estonia, and Latvia.
Within the scope of the 5G-Routes project, LMT coordinates the implementation of the 5G infrastructure across the three countries’ test sites in collaboration with 5G-Routes partners including Ericsson and Telia. Additionally, LMT is responsible for ensuring uninterrupted mobile network connectivity in the 5G cross-border corridor.