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Purdue Airport Creates 5G Airport Testing Network

Purdue Airport Creates 5G Airport Testing Network

Purdue University Airport, in collaboration with Ericsson and Saab, has created a new 5G network that will be used as a “lab to life” proving ground to develop 5G solutions in order to enhance operations and security at airports, and test new high-performance networks in real life scenarios.

The project is attempting to develop and test 5G solutions to replace existing airport systems that require either hardwired network connections, point-to-point radio frequency links or rely on public network connections which usually come with consumer-oriented performance limitations.

Aside from enhancing security and reliability, moving these systems to 5G-based solutions allows an airport to have greater flexibility to add or relocate products as it goes through construction phases; saving time and resources.

Ericsson, the information and communications firm, is contributing to the private 5G network at the airport. Saab will be installing its Aerobahn and SAFE Event Management platforms as part of the project, as well as ADS-B sensors, in order to improve safety and efficiency at the airport.

“Expanding the lab to life platform to the Purdue Airport creates great opportunities to advance aviation and mobility innovation and education in partnership with industry, faculty and students”, said Troy Hege, Vice President of Innovation and Technology, Purdue Research Foundation.

George Mulhern, Head of Ericsson Enterprise Wireless Solutions, said: “This unique collaboration enables trials and industrialization of 5G applications and use cases that help solve aviation market needs – improving flight safety, enhanced passenger experience, as well as increased efficiencies and cost savings. This is just one more example of how different enterprises can work with 5G networks to develop solutions in real-world environments.”

Purdue University Airport spans 537 acres and has two runways, a system of parallel taxiways, an apron area and two passenger terminal buildings. The airport has over 125,000 aircraft operations annually, making it the second busiest airport in Indiana.

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