Photo: Port of Kiel

Port of Kiel eyes autonomous ferry operations with new 5G project

Germany’s city of Kiel announced plans to use the 5G network technology for autonomous ferry shipping operations in the port area.

As explained, the new mobile radio standard 5G is expected to enable passenger ferries to cruise partly autonomously between the banks of the inner Kiel Fjord and later even in a fully autonomous way.

Further opportunities to utilise 5G exist in the areas of port logistics and sailing sports, according to the port.

This is the core of Kiel’s joint project “Fjord 5G” for whose implementation a letter of intent (LOI) has been signed.

The project consortium of “Fjord 5G”, consisting of the State Capital City of Kiel, the Christian-Albrecht-University of Kiel, the companies AVL Deutschland GmbH, Raytheon Anschütz GmbH, HH-VISION, ADDIX Internet Systems GmbH, the Port of Kiel and the Kiel Science Centre, evaluates different application scenarios in four subprojects. Among others, they investigate and test the utilisation potential of 5G for local companies, e.g. the optimisation of port logistics through 5G.

Vodafone Deutschland will provide 5G to the part of the Kiel Fjord belonging to the city centre by the end of 2021 and will successively extend the scope in the course of the project as required.

On 19 August, the Economics Minister of Schleswig-Holstein, Bernd Buchholz, the Lord Mayor of the City of Kiel, Ulf Kämpfer, the Vice President of the University, Karin Schwarz and the CEO of Vodafone Deutschland, Hannes Ametsreiter, signed LOI at the Ostseekai Terminal to enable the implementation of this innovative project.

Port of Kiel
Port of Kiel

According to Minister Bernd Buchholz, 5G is a cutting-edge technology enabling much higher bandwidths, very short latency periods and a comprehensive linkage of devices.

“We need to illustrate this technology for the people with projects like the “Fjord 5G”.

“Kiel is just the right place for this project: a modern city with a Fjord in the heart of it, a city of science and higher education institutions and a port city which is an important gateway to the Baltic Sea Region,” Lord Mayor Ulf Kämpfer added.

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