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Shenzhen uses 5G technology for urban infrastructure

12. November 2020

The city in Guangdong Province announced on August 17, 2020 that it will be the first metropolis in China with a fully developed 5G network and has to date built more than 46,000 cell towers. The technology of the fast 5G mobile network is leading to significant changes in the infrastructure sector in Shenzhen. It facilitates the work of employees and increases work performance and efficiency.



At the Pengcheng substation, robots monitor the technical equipment and send the data to a control center where employees analyze the status and values and intervene if necessary. The substation, which provides 20 percent of Shenzhen’s daily electricity consumption, was recently upgraded with a local 5G network. Xie Zhiyi, the manager of the substation, said that with the use of the 5G network, many tasks can be performed by the robots and we receive the relevant data and results directly at our headquarters. “Previously, workers needed about three days to complete a checklist of 1,300 points. With 5G and artificial intelligence, the inspection is completed in just one hour. This corresponds to an increase in efficiency of 270 percent,” added Xie. Following the upgrade of the substation, 1,036 IoT devices are currently installed there, including robots for inspections and high-resolution cameras.

The substation is just one of many examples of the application of 5G in the infrastructure sector in Shenzhen. The latest generation mobile network will also be used in the technical upgrade of the port. The “Mawan SmartPort” is the first port in China to use the new technology. A typical application there is the remote control of the container gantry cranes via the 5G network. Hu Zhijian, an employee at the port, said that in the past, workers had to climb into the elevated cabin under adverse conditions. Now they sit in a control room and control the cranes, supported by high-resolution cameras, via the fast 5G network. The 5G network has also greatly improved coverage of the port area with fast Internet. Previously, it was necessary to either lay fiber optic cables or rely on patchy WLAN, according to a port spokesman. China Merchants Port (CMP), the owner and operator of Mawan SmartPort, said 5G has increased operating performance by 30 percent, reduced the number of employees in the port area by 80 percent and halved the number of work-related accidents. CMP plans to modernize other ports in China based on the model of Mawan SmartPort.

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MPR Author

About the author: Julian Busch is founder and managing director of MPR China Certification GmbH
Publisher: MPR China Certification GmbH

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