Nokia has announced that it has signed a contract with 450connect, a joint venture backed by German energy and water companies, to build its nationwide LTE450 radio network.
The agreement will cover the supply of radio system technology for the 450 MHz network, including core technology, radio stations, microwave radio links for the backhaul network and backup power systems. Nokia will manage the delivery and performance of all LTE components, including maintenance services, until 2040, Nokia said.
In March 2021, 450connect was awarded the 450 MHz frequencies until 2040 by the Federal Network Agency. With 450connect’s new nationwide, highly available and secure LTE450 radio network, critical infrastructure operators will receive the platform they need to digitize their infrastructure, implement the energy transition to decarbonization and further secure supply. energy, the company said.
Nokia says its LTE450 technology is perfectly suited to achieve widespread coverage and leverage services such as voice and machine-to-machine (M2M) communications or Internet of Things applications for critical infrastructure. This private, industrial-grade LTE/LTE-M solution is optimized for M2M applications and mission-critical voice communications.
450connect CEO Carsten Ullrich said: “Given the major challenges of building the 450 MHz platform, we are delighted to have Nokia as a strong and capable partner alongside us on the term, with which we can meet the high technical requirements of our critical infrastructure operator customers.
Dirk Lewandowski, Nokia Enterprise Vice President for Central and Eastern Europe, said: “The task of digitizing Germany’s critical infrastructure is of enormous strategic importance.
“Nokia can make an important contribution to securing this country’s energy supply through our private, industrial-grade 450 MHz LTE network, especially given the challenges posed by the energy transition towards decarbonization and decentralization. We we look forward to a close and trusting cooperation with 450connect on this long-term and important project for the Federal Republic of Germany.”
Due to the high demand for highly available and resilient communications, both parties said they agreed to a rapid implementation of the radio network.
The first end-to-end tests will take place in the field by mid-2022 to ensure performance for the upcoming deployment. The radio services will be offered in the first regions of Germany in 2023. Nationwide rollout will take place by 2025.
Nokia solution includes geo-redundant LTE cores, RAN network, Nokia Wavence microwave radio link, management solution and installation, commissioning, integration, training and support services . In addition, 20 years of life cycle management of this critical network will be provided by Nokia.
Deploying this type of network at 450 MHz will result in significantly reduced cell counts compared to higher frequency bands.
The amount of spectrum typically available at 450 MHz is small, so it’s not ideal for applications that have a high demand for capacity. Applications where demand can be well-planned and low-variability can result in a network that can be deployed quickly to generate rapid business improvement. Applications such as smart meters and critical infrastructure monitoring are well suited to the limited capacity of these systems.
In the early 2000s, I submitted a paper to a House Committee on Rural Broadband proposing the use of 450 MHz in low-density rural areas as a wireless broadband access solution. At the time, such a system would have been a viable alternative to satellite solutions, at a time when the primary applications were email and web browsing. Now more than 20 years old, such a system, even if upgraded to 5G, would not have the capacity to meet consumer demand.
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