AT&T’s 5G will provide the foundation for new private 5G network testing at Texas AT&T University’s RELLIS research campus, for exploration and development of commercial and defense use cases. The private 5G network testbeds will open this fall.
The RELLIS campus covers more than 2,000 acres and is already home to several Texas A&M research facilities, as well as a testing and evaluation site for the George H. W. Bush Combat Development Complex. AT&T is bringing 5G to the campus so that commercial companies can access 5G to support connected and/or autonomous vehicles, roadside safety and physical security, large-scale infrastructure, robotics, autonomous agriculture, smart cities/campuses and IoT use cases, according to the two partners.
In particular, AT&T and Texas A&M said that use cases to be explored will include testing autonomous vehicles in smart intersection grids, precision navigation and precision agriculture, the use of AR/VR in manufacturing and the military; and the use of robots in consumer, healthcare and manufacturing, including how they deal with physical barriers such as doors and stairs, and how robots could be used to improve rural healthcare access and quality.
“The 5G testbeds at RELLIS are yet another opportunity for our customers to explore the potential that AT&T 5G can bring to help revolutionize the future of multiple industries,” said Jason Porter, president of AT&T Public Sector and FirstNet. “Their capabilities to bring to life innovative 5G solutions and applications are transformative. We expect AT&T 5G – one of the outcomes of our investment of more than $110 billion in our wireless and wireline networks from 2016 to 2020 – will help power the future of defense, government, commercial industry and society.”
AT&T said that the addition of 5G will make the RELLIS campus one of the large-scale testing and evaluation sites for five of the Department of Defense’s 11 modernization priorities: Autonomy, artificial intelligence, hypersonics, cyber security, and directed energy. State agencies within the Texas A&M system, including the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), Texas A&M Transportation Institute (TTI), Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM), and Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) will be the first organizations to make use of the testbeds.
“This new 5G testbed will be one of the most advanced university based 5G testbeds in the country. Bringing together the private and public sectors, the RELLIS 5G testbeds can test 5G technologies at scale utilizing both on road and off-road terrains through 5G mmWave and Sub-6 frequencies,” said Brad Hoover, CIO for the RELLIS campus. “These testbeds are being set up to test new approaches to augmented and virtual reality, autonomous vehicles or any number of use cases as well as those that have yet to be imagined.”
Texas A&M will also conduct “proactive and reactive cybersecurity testing” related to data security, according to a release about the project.
“Because RELLIS will soon have 5G capabilities that cover such a large portion of this campus, RELLIS can provide opportunities to complete testing and evaluation across all of those domains in a protected environment,” said Kelly Templin, director of the RELLIS Campus. “For a company looking to become a research partner, RELLIS is very much the gateway to all of this and everything else the Texas A&M System has to offer.”
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