MTS - Mobile TeleSystems OJSC

09/27/2021 | News release | Distributed by Public on 09/27/2021 06:35

MTS and Ericsson Launch Russia's First Commercial 5G-Ready Private Cellular Network for Gold Producer Polymetal

MOSCOW, Russia - Mobile TeleSystems PJSC ("MTS" or "the Company") (NYSE: MBT; MOEX: MTSS), Russia's largest mobile operator and a leading provider of media and digital services, announces the launch of Russia's first commercial 5G-ready private cellular LTE network for Polymetal International plc, one of the world's largest producers of gold and silver, at the Nezhdaninskoye gold deposit in Russia's Sakha Republic (Yakutia). The cutting-edge network leverages the advanced, innovative Ericsson Dedicated Networks solution.

Under the project, MTS has deployed a 5G-ready wireless network for Yuzhno-Verkhoyansk Mining Company JSC, an affiliated company of Polymetal. The new network will support integrated mining dispatching systems, such as remote and automated control of equipment including excavators, drilling rigs, and measuring devices, as well as remote monitoring and video systems.

The parties first signed an agreement on the construction of the network in October 2020. The project scope provides for a comprehensive set of turnkey solutions - from site inspection, preparation, and network architecture design to base station and equipment installation followed by testing and commercial launch. During the initial stage, the Ericsson-powered network will operate under the LTE standard, with the follow-on potential for a seamless, rapid upgrade to 5G connectivity at some point in the future.

The new network is built on top of the Ericsson Dedicated Networks solution, which complies with the 3GPP standards and includes a full-fledged carrier-grade network core. It supports 4G and 5G Non-Standalone (NSA) simultaneously and allows dual-mode core capability to support 5G New Radio Standalone (5G NR SA). These capabilities provide industrial enterprises with carrier-grade packet network functions for mission-critical applications.

Georgy Dzhabiev, MTS Director of Digital Solutions, commented: "MTS is among the first operators in Russia to successfully carry out private LTE and 5G-ready pilot projects with leading Russian enterprises across multiple industries. We are grateful to our partner Polymetal for this fruitful cooperation, which resulted in the launch of the first commercial private LTE network in Russia for remote monitoring and managing critical processes in challenging geographic and climactic conditions. I am sure that MTS's capabilities and expertise in rolling out complex network and IT solutions - including the digitalization and automation of industrial processes - will help our customers improve their operational efficiency and enhance business productivity."

Alexander Laguta, Head of the Information Technology and Communications Department at the Yakutsk branch of Polymetal, said: "The system is already showing its effectiveness and is ready to move to the next stage of introducing innovative technologies in production. The private 5G-ready network will significantly increase the speed of transferring large amounts of data and reduce the cost of maintaining the technological network. One of the first projects on the basis of this network will be launch of dispatching systems, remote control of drilling rigs and video monitoring.

Alexander Romanov, Head of Private Networks, Ericsson Russia, said: "Private networks are the backbone of critical communications infrastructure and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), not only in mining, but also in other industries with a high demand for seamless coverage, performance, security and reliability while supporting mission-critical business processes in a new digital reality. The specifics of mining companies' operations is working in difficult geographic and weather conditions in remote areas with limited cellular coverage. The deployment of a private LTE network as a single high-speed platform for various technological needs will enable a significant improvement in the speed of transferring large volumes of information, the fault tolerance of the private network, reducing its maintenance cost, and enabling the introduction of advanced technologies including artificial intelligence."

During the next stages of the project, the companies plan to deploy a dispatch radio communication system over LTE based on MC-PTT (Mission Critical Push-to-Talk), including integration with site's internal telephone network.