The government has launched a search for companies who can provide guidance on how to bring 5G technology to the UK’s railways.
The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is launching a trial of 5G connectivity on the TransPennine Railway line between Leeds and Manchester, as part of the government’s Northern Powerhouse plans.
Now the government is looking to collaborate with companies who can provide support and information for The TransPennine Initiative, or TPI, relating to trackside infrastructure, including addressing issues related to access, processes and costs.
Companies selected to take part in the trial will be given the opportunity to deploy their trial radio equipment on the TPI pilot route without the need to invest in trackside infrastructure, while demonstrating the viability of their products in a live environment with a wide demographic of passengers, including business commuters, day trippers and long distance travellers.
Trial participants will also benefit from financial support for installation activities on the TPI pilot route, as well as access to a new 5G facility at Melton Mowbray where technologies can be tested.
It is hoped the project will provide a solution for the Government’s ambition of main line rail routes having uninterrupted mobile coverage and guaranteed Wi-Fi.
Minister for Digital, Margot James said: “The importance of fast, reliable and uninterrupted connectivity on our rail network is only going to increase. Projects like the Trans Pennine Initiative will be instrumental in delivering this for passengers, and are all part of our commitment to make the UK a world leader in 5G.”
The initiative is a joint effort between the Local Full Fibre Networks and 5G Testbeds and Trials Programmes, with Network Rail serving as delivery partner.
Companies interested in being involved in the trial should contact firstname.lastname@example.org by noon 14 September 2018.
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