[8th February, UK]
JET Connectivity has today announced that it has been awarded funding through the Net Zero Innovation Portfolio (NZIP) from the Department for Energy Security & Net Zero. This funding will further develop its 5G buoys to deliver robust, pop-up 5G connectivity to the offshore wind sector.
During the installation of a new wind farm, which takes several years, hundreds of people working on site have limited resources to communicate with each other and with their teams on shore. This is due to a lack of connectivity offshore, and the specialist equipment required for satellite or radio for communications.
JET is addressing this safety critical issue by developing floating 5G mobile networks to provide pop-up connectivity to the wind farm teams from shore, along the route the vessels take, to the wind farm site itself.
As with on-land mobile networks, the crew will be able to connect with their usual device and use the 5G for a multitude of purposes, from simply accessing and sending documents and making contact in an emergency, to streaming a HD video of an issue on site to the operations centre on land.
As with on-land 5G, these networks will also enable incredibly innovative uses of new technology being developed across the sector, by enabling real time data transfer. Robotics and autonomy are rapidly growing in capability for offshore build, survey and maintenance, but they require a reliable, fast internet connection to work.
During this Department for Energy Security & Net Zero funded project, JET will be developing and testing its latest technology both in the lab and at sea throughout 2023 and 2024. The JET team will be working closely with its offshore wind industry connections and partners to develop this part of its solution and service to the requirements of the end users.
UK Energy Minister Graham Stuart said: “This funding will see the next generation of energy pioneers drive forward cheap and sustainable low-carbon technologies.
“This will not only deliver green jobs and lower the costs of energy to businesses but also foster world-leading solutions to net zero and economic growth.”