Fifth-generation cellular network technology, known as 5G, is vital for Europe to grow its vertical markets including in the fields of Healthcare, Transportation and Food. It will boost job creation and exports. It will also result in improved health outcomes, safer roads and sustainable food production. As such, the EU-funded 5G-HEART project will focus on vital vertical use cases within the Healthcare, Transport and Aquaculture markets.
This collaborative initiative involves major industry players, research institutions, and SMEs. All in all, the project consortium includes 23 partners from seven different countries across Europe, with a range of organisations ranging from National Research Institutions and Universities to Large Enterprises and SMEs. The consortium partners have come together as a result of their proven know-how in 5G, vertical applications, standardisation, business modelling, prototyping, trials, demonstrations.
Healthcare, Transport and the Food verticals are hugely important in Europe, in terms of jobs, market size (collectively surpassing 3 trillion Euros) and export trade. Moreover, they are vital from a social perspective, for better patient outcomes, safer transportation and safer and more sustainable food production. 5G is important for these verticals, in terms of improvements for utility, efficient processes, safety, among others.
In the Healthcare vertical, 5G-HEART will validate pillcams for automatic detection in screening of colon cancer and vital-sign patches with advanced geo-localization as well as 5G AR/VR paramedic services. In the Transport area, 5G-HEART will validate autonomous, assisted and remote driving as well as vehicle data services. Within the Food vertical, the focus will be on 5G-based transformation of the Aquaculture sector (which has global implications for Norway, Greece and Ireland).
The infrastructure shared by the verticals, will host important innovations: slicing as a service; resource orchestration in access/core and cloud/edge segments with live user environments. Novel applications and devices (e.g. underwater drones, car components, healthcare devices) will be devised. Trials will run at the sites of the following projects including 5G-Vinni (Oslo, Norway), 5Genesis (Guildford, UK), 5G-EVE (Athens, Greece), as well as Oulu, Finland and Groningen, Netherlands,, which will be integrated to form a powerful and sustainable platform where slice concurrency will be validated at scale.
The consortium includes major vertical players, research/academic institutions and SMEs. 5G-HEART KPI validation ensures improved healthcare, public safety, farm management and business models in a 5G market, stimulating significant business opportunities within and beyond the project.
Transport Vertical Use Cases
Trials were undertaken across multiple sites, building a sustainable platform for concurrent slice applications. Epitomical led the majority of use cases at proposal stage and the execution of a number of uses cases within the Transport vertical, while supporting other use cases and work packages in the project. The use cases were jointly defined in detail with project participants and an external advisory board. Trial scenarios, architectures and technology demonstrators were completed over 5G networks. A brief summary of three such use cases is provided below:
Scenario T4S4 – Location Based Advertising
With vehicle and passenger information readily available, location-based servers can be implemented to stream content (upon request, if required) as well as local advertising or traffic guidance to vehicles and road users. This becomes especially useful in car-sharing models where vehicles are not owned and the origin and destination of each journey may vary depending on the passengers.
Scenario T4S6 – Vehicle Sourced HD Mapping
Autonomous vehicles do not only require on-board sensors to perceive the world around them, but also high-definition maps to aid their decision making. HD maps of roads and infrastructure will take years to capture and consolidate. There is the added issue of dynamic changes to these maps over time.
As such, an innovative means to collect and maintain up to date data would be to crowdsource this information through on-board cameras and sensors which would stream back to a regional or central service, firstly to establish baseline maps and subsequently to manage change detection.
Scenario T4S7 – Environmental Services
Local, Regional and National weather offices source their data through satellite earth observation maps and local weather stations. These are generally used for weather forecasts. Vehicles may provide a rich and real time source of weather and environmental information through existing on-board sensors such as:
- Light Sensors for external light conditions such as cloud cover and fog
- Wiper data for intensity of rain
- Suspension data for monitoring road conditions such as potholes