First 5G Broadcast field trial starts in Bavaria

The 5G TODAY project officially launched its unique field trial for 5G Broadcasting on May 9, 2019. The new large-area 5G field trial in the Bavarian alpine region is covered by two high-performance transmitters located in Ismaning and on the top of the Wendelstein mountain.

First 5G Broadcast field trial starts in Bavaria
First 5G Broadcast field trial starts in Bavaria

Dr. Florian Herrmann, head of the Bavarian State Chancellery and Minister of State for Federal and European Affairs and Media, started the operation of the transmitters from a tablet in front of 160 guests from the telecommunications and media industry, who were participating in an accompanying two-day conference at the Broadcast Technology Institute IRT.

The project partners Bavarian Broadcasting Corporation (Bayerischer Rundfunk, BR), IRT, Kathrein, Rohde & Schwarz as well as Telefónica Germany are jointly testing broadcasting options for future 5G technology.

With the help of the high transmission towers and the high power of the transmitters (High-Power-High-Tower-Concept, HPHT), the large-area broadcasting of TV programs can be tested based on the new broadcast mode FeMBMS (Further evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service). The FeMBMS broadcast mode allows far-reaching and inexpensive distribution of popular content across large coverage areas with a radius of up to 60 kilometres. Both transmitters operate with 100 kilowatts effective output power (technically: ERP).

The 5G TODAY project is intended to lay the foundation for the efficient transmission of broadcasting content in the 5G networks of the future. It has been supported by the Bavarian Research Foundation since 2017.

IRT is coordinating the project and is developing a prototype FeMBMS receiver based on a Software-defined Radio (SDR) solution. In the future, this technology could be integrated into smartphones, tablets and TV sets for the reliable reception of live and linear content over 5G. The test receiver for the start event is kindly provided by the Institute for Communications Technology of the Technische Universität Braunschweig.

The test operation of 5G TODAY will run from now on until autumn 2019, after which the results and further exploitation of the findings will be evaluated. The project ends on October 31, 2019.

Posted by Chris Dickinson, technology journalist and editor of the Always On blog. May 10, 2019.

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