First TransPennine Express at Lancaster railway station

Network Rail to start trials with 5G

Network Rail and the British government will soon start trials with a 5G network for passengers on the TransPennine Express connection between Leeds and Manchester. The aim is to improve the Wi-Fi connection in trains using fibre-optic connections next to the track. The government asks interested companies who want to participate in the pilot project to report via a market consultation.

The trials are part of the UK Government’s Local Full Fiber Network (LFFN) program for new, fast broadband connections. During the project on the TransPennine Express connection, different methods for fast and high-quality internet in the train will be┬átested.

Fibre optic cables

It is intended that participants use new fibre optic and power cables on the route between Leeds and Manchester. This network is isolated from the critical systems of rail operator Network Rail. Telecom stations on the route are also available to the parties involved. A total of 35 million British pounds or 39 million Euros has been made available for the project.

Minister of State for Digital and Culture Margot James: “The importance of fast, reliable and uninterrupted internet connections on our rail network is increasing. Projects such as the Trans Pennine Initiative are methods to offer this to passengers. They are also part of our goal to make the United Kingdom world leader in 5G. ”

Interested companies can contact to the Ministry of Digitization, Culture, Media and Sport.

Author: Marieke van Gompel

Marieke van Gompel is editor-in-chief of RailTech.com, RailFreight.com and SpoorPro, online magazine for railway professionals in the Netherlands.

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