By enabling connectivity to multiple nodes, the MCM can be used to help accelerate new 5G use cases, particularly in high-speed transport, vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure applications.
“mmWave technology delivers superior connectivity speeds, high data throughput and ultra-low latency, however, it has also suffered from variations in quality, particularly in challenging outdoor environments often associated with mobility applications,” said Alan Jones, CEO, Blu Wireless. “The Mobile Connection Manager is unlocking the potential of connected mobility ecosystems, such as autonomous vehicles, Mobility-as-a-Service, and Rail 5G, by providing consistently well performing connections in a constantly changing environment.”
The MCM is unique in its provision of a flexible mobility software control layer to mmWave connections, which were previously thought to be extremely difficult to implement.
Key features include:
- Locality awareness: Data stored in trackside/roadside nodes can be sent to vehicle nodes for use by the MCM, enabling optimised decision making based on where a vehicle node is located.
- Geolocation awareness: GPS inside trackside/roadside and vehicle nodes is detectable via the MCM, supporting decision making based on geolocation of vehicle nodes relative to trackside/roadside nodes.
- Inter-node messaging: On-vehicle units can exchange messages, improving decision making based on vehicle perspective.
The modular software architecture enables multi-link management within a 5G mmWave network. The Manager's built-in flexibility allows customers to configure connections for a variety of applications, remotely or in the field to meet new or unforeseen requirements.
The MCM solution has been commercially proven by FirstGroup’s Rail 5G on the Isle of Wight’s Island Line and South Western Railway, consistently delivering over one gigabit per second (Gbps) throughput to a train moving at high speeds.