e.GO partners with Ericsson and Vodafone to launch 5G car manufacturing in Germany
Telecommunications giants Ericsson and Vodafone have joined forces with German electric micro-car company e.Go to make Automotive 5G manufacturing a reality.
Not only will the technology enable greater automation and 5G connectivity, it will also increase the flexibility for e.Go to produce different kinds of vehicles and has even incorporated a model to ensure that any new e.Go factories will be built much faster and at a smaller cost than traditional automotive manufacturing plants.At e.GO’s Factory 1, where the e.GO Life model is manufactured, Vodafone has deployed a private network, incorporating 5G Core and 5G New Radio solutions from Ericsson’s 5G Platform. The network delivers secure and almost real-time data networking across the production chain, covering digital material management, autonomous vehicle control and more.
Günther Schuh, the CEO of e.GO Mobile AG, firmly believes that the 5G network will deliver faster and more reliable production with constant access to relevant information, describing the assembly plant as a “true Industry 4.0 factory” with “connectivity linking the physical and digital world”.
Having already incorporated network slicing and mobile edge computing technologies, the optimized on-site network spans 36 antennas across the 8500sqm facility, delivering an impressive gigabit bandwidth and latency of just a few milliseconds. Ericsson also plans to install 5G Radio Dots in the factory in the coming months.
The operational speed and efficiency is improved using a secure automatic identification and delivery system for production materials to each specific vehicle as it goes through the assembly process, alongside fully autonomous vehicles replacing the traditional production line to move vehicles from station to station. Autonomous forklift trucks and small trains are also on the horizon to transport materials between the warehouses and production hall.
Arun Bansal, President and Head of Europe & Latin America at Ericsson, said; "5G is the key to opening the door to a new era in manufacturing productivity, speed, security and efficiency – and the automotive industry is a prime example of the beneficiaries. Our 5G technology leadership, including solutions and abilities specifically tailored to manufacturing, enables us to partner with companies such as Vodafone and e.GO to deliver the very best private networks solutions.”
Hannes Ametsreiter, Head of Vodafone Germany, added; "Our automotive industry needs a fast network directly where the newest and most innovative cars are built. Data is an important fuel for modern automobile production.”