The U.S. Department of Defense announced $600 million in awards for 5G experimentation and testing at five U.S. military test sites, representing the largest full-scale 5G tests for dual-use applications in the world.
Each installation will partner military Services, industry leaders, and academic experts to advance the Department’s 5G capabilities. Projects will include piloting 5G-enabled augmented/virtual reality for mission planning and training, testing 5G-enabled Smart Warehouses, and evaluating 5G technologies to enhance distributed command and control.
The test sites include: Hill Air Force Base, Utah; Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington; Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, Georgia; Naval Base San Diego, California; and Nellis Air Force Base, Las Vegas, Nevada.
The bases were selected for their ability to provide streamlined access to spectrum bands and mature fiber and wireless infrastructure, support new or improved infrastructure requirements, and conduct controlled experimentation with dynamic spectrum sharing, a U.S. DoD release said.
The San Diego portion of the testing involves a project to develop a 5G-enabled smart warehouse that improves materiel and supply handling, management, storage and distribution for the Navy's Fleet Logistics Center in San Diego and creates a proving ground for testing, refining and validating emerging 5G enabled technologies.
AT&T, GE Research, Vectrus Mission Solutions Corp. and Deloitte Consulting LLP will take part in designing and building the 5G test bed, network enhancements and warehouse specific applications, according to the DOD.
A Naval Base Coronado warehouse operated by the Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center will be used to prototype a smart warehouse use case and perform at-scale experimentation.
Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific will lead the technical assessment and support the implementation and execution of the experiments, performing tests and evaluation, and ensuring the deployed 5G technology and smart warehouse applications meet the expectations of the Navy and the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering.