Schneider Electric, Capgemini, Qualcomm build 5G hoisting system


Fin is a former junior editor at TechForge.

Schneider Electric, Capgemini, and Qualcomm Technologies are collaborating on a 5G-enabled automated hoisting system for deployment across industrial and logistic sites.

Hoisting systems, like cranes, are used to move heavy equipment and materials in industrial environments where conditions are often extreme.

Automating this function can improve safety and efficiency, but this requires multiple operations existing on the same network with video cameras and programmable logic controllers (PLCs).

The solution, unveiled at Mobile World Congress Barcelona, will combine Schneider Electric’s digital automation experience with Capgemini’s network deployment knowledge and Qualcomm Technologies AI chip proficiency.

Combined, the three companies hope to bring improved reliability and capability to hoisting systems for a variety of automation, remote control, and safety functions.

Fotis Karonis, group leader of 5G and edge computing at Capgemini, said: “The 5G end-to-end solution customised for Schneider Electric’s hoisting system is a good example of the added value of 5G for industrial communication and really illustrates its potential to transform an industry segment.”

The technology was developed at Schneider Electric’s hoisting lab in Grenoble, France. By replacing wired connections in the industrial automation process with a private 5G network, digital transformation can be optimised and deployed at scale.

Marc Lafont, vice president of innovation and upstream marketing at Schneider Electric, said: “Schneider Electric has always been a proponent of collaboration and the innovation that comes with it. This breakthrough end-to-end 5G private network hoisting solution is a perfect example of the power of working together as we pilot it at end-user sites this year.”

The joint hoisting solution will operate within the 3.8GHz radio frequency band, using an Athonet core network and Airspan small cells alongside Qualcomm’s FSM100 5G RAN platform.

“In the short term, we will validate more industrial 5G use cases in various discrete manufacturing, hybrid automation, and process automation applications. In the mid-term, we will experiment with deeper integration of 5G technology inside our automation equipment,” Lafont said.

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