The Government announces 5G Competition to cement UK’s position as World leader in development of 5G

 

5g-testbed

The UK Government has announced a new £25 million competition to cement the UK’s position as a world leader in the development of 5G technology.

Digital Minister Matt Hancock revealed the 5G Testbeds and Trials competition as part of the UK Government’s £740m National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF), which was set up to support next-generation digital infrastructure like 5G.

The government is seeking further locations across the country for test sites in order to support the rollout of 5G network technology. To that end, it’s inviting project proposals to receive grants of up to £5 million.

Winning project proposals must come from UK registered organisations that are carrying out projects in the UK and working in collaboration with others. They must also be industry-led, or at least have a strong industry component.

Submissions for the 5G Testbeds and Trials Programme will be accepted from October 23, and the process will close on December 13.

Minister for Digital Matt Hancock said: “To stay competitive we must be at the cutting edge of new technology and we are determined to be one of the first countries in the world to use 5G. In these very early stages we want all ideas, from all parts of the country, that will help us get the technology and the roll-out right to have a nationwide network of 5G innovators.

“It’s all part of our determination to make Britain the best place in the world to start and grow a digital business, and deliver for all citizens now and in the years to come.”

It was during the 2016 Autumn Statement that the UK Government first announced its intention to invest in a programme of 5G testbed intitiatives. This has led to the likes of BrightonBasingstoke and the North Eastall establishing 5G testbed programmes.

Besides these Bristol University, King’s College London, and The University of Surrey have all teamed up to create a world class 5G technology test network of their own.

In recent days Worcestershire has joined the roster of UK regions looking to supply their own 5G testbed facilities. It will be interesting to see which UK city or county will be next.

Image credit: Panchenko Vladimir/Shutterstock.com

Source: 5G.co.uk

EU gives final approval to WiFi4EU €120M public Wi-Fi plan

wifi-cellular

The European Parliament gave the final nod to the WiFi4EU project, which will see local authorities in member states bid for a share of a €120 million fund to pay for the installation of free Wi-Fi in public areas.

Mariya Gabriel, commissioner for Digital Economy and Society at the European Commission (EC), described the development as “a concrete step forward for delivering results to all EU citizens”.

Regional authorities are expected to be able to submit applications for a stake of the pot before the year-end.

The money will be awarded to authorities across the economic bloc deemed to be most deserving, in the form of vouchers covering the cost of installing equipment in community areas such as libraries and town squares.

WiFi4EU was announced by the EC in September 2016 and since gone through a lengthy approval process, which also saw the European Council of member states give the green light to the bill.

Following today’s final sign-off from the European Parliament, it will be recorded in the EU’s official journal and passed into law.

High hopes
The announcement comes a day after Broadband Competence Office (BCO) director Jan Droge tipped WiFi4EU to have a significant impact on connectivity in underserved areas when the first round of funds are made available.

Speaking at Broadband World Forum in Berlin, Droge said the programme was: “A new aid mechanism which is quite innovative. It will make connectivity in small public spaces easier”.

The BCO is an EU body set-up to supply advice and support for member states struggling with the technological and logistical aspects of fibre broadband deployment, including securing funding and partnerships with regulators.

Source: Chris Donkin-Mobile World Live

Panasonic Develops Automotive Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems against Cyber Attacks

Panasonic Corporation announced today that it has developed automotive intrusion detection and prevention systems as a cyber security countermeasure for autonomous and connected cars.

Connected cars are connected to the Internet, so like current IT systems, they have a possibility of receiving cyber attacks from around the world. By using Panasonic’s newly developed systems, they are possible to detect cyber attacks in real-time while simultaneously preventing them.

Automobiles have a long product lifecycle, so there is a possibility that they are exposed to attacks that have been evolved compared from attacks that were assumed at the time of factory shipment. By using these systems, they are possible to collect information of the evolved attacks on the cloud side and detect the evolved attacks by distributing and updating the new rules of the countermeasures to the vehicles.

Panasonic’s newly developed systems will ensure safe driving with autonomous and connected cars by detecting the intrusion of attacks and viruses to the vehicle system due to cyber-attacks and discarding and disabling them using the prevention system. They will make it easier to comply with future in-vehicle security legislations.

The features of the new systems are as follows.

  1. Detects intrusions of attacks from the Internet at an early stage, and additionally detects intrusions to the in-vehicle network as a second step.
  2. In addition to the widely used CAN *1, the systems are also compatible with Ethernet*2, which is expected to spread in the future as an in-vehicle network, and enables comprehensive detections of intrusions to the entire vehicle.
  3. By collecting information from multiple vehicles on the cloud, the systems can detect attacks before they are identified as a true security incident.

The system consists of a vehicle-installed “monitoring module” and a “monitoring cloud” that is linked to the monitoring module. The vehicle-installed monitoring module monitors the entire vehicle based on the monitoring rules. By using the company’s newly developed systems, once the attacks that cannot be detected with existing monitoring modules are discovered, the systems can prevent new attacks by updating the monitoring rules from the monitoring cloud. Therefore, it helps to maintain safety even after the vehicle is released on the market. Also, by grasping signs of attacks before they are identified as true security incidents, they are possible to implement countermeasures in advance so that they can minimize the effects of the attacks.

Image of the Automotive Intrusion Detection and Prevention Systems

Technical Features:

  • 1. In-vehicle device-type host intrusion detection technology: This technology detects intrusions from the Internet, which is an early stage of the attacks, and can be installed and used with Internet connected devices (IVI/TCU*3) In addition to clearly identifying the attacks from the obtainable logs from an OS like Linux and other various security functions, the system can also detect the attacks by combining multiple behavioral information.
  • 2. In-vehicle device-type CAN intrusion detection technology: This technology detects intrusions to CAN communication systems, which is a second stage of the attacks, and can be installed and used with CAN connected devices (ECU) There are two types of CAN monitoring usages, which consist of (1) CAN filter that filter unauthorized CAN commands received by the installed ECU, and (2) CAN monitoring that detects unauthorized commands by monitoring all CAN bus systems that are connected by the installed ECU. Unauthorized commands are judged by taking into consideration various conditions of the vehicle, so it is possible to reduce the number of false positive under specific conditions. Detection of unauthorized commands can be made for each single command, resulting is real-time prevention after detection.
  • 3. In-vehicle device-type Ethernet intrusion detection technology: This technology detects intrusions to Ethernet communication systems, which is a second stage of the attacks, and can be installed and used with Ethernet connected devices (ECU) There is an Ether filter that filters unauthorized Ether frames that are received or intercepted by the installed ECU (Ethernet Switch ECU, etc.) The system consists of the overlook method, which can lightly determine unauthorized commands by analyzing the frame headers and a detailed method, which has a high-load operation, but can accurately determine unauthorized commands. Flexible detection is possible by combining these methods.
  • 4. Cloud-type vehicle intrusion detection technology: This system analyzes a large amount of logs collected from in-vehicle devices of multiple vehicles through machine learning and can be used by placing it in the cloud. As for the usage, in-vehicle network model that has conducted prior learning, will automatically narrow down the logs that may become potential security risks. After that, the attack analysts will analyze only the selected logs. By linking with various in-vehicle device-type intrusion detection technologies, it is possible to grasp signs of attacks before they are identified as true security incidents.
Explanation of terminology
  • *1 CAN (Controller Area Network)
    CAN is a high noise-resistant serial communication protocol that was developed for vehicles, and current vehicles use in-vehicle networks via CAN communication to communicate between the vehicle ECU.
  • *2 Ethernet
    Using Ethernet to communicate between the ECU and electrical components within the vehicles based on the network standard used in offices and households is expected the increase the speed and capacity of data transmissions. It also enables data exchange with an IP base, making links to external network (cloud) even easier.
  • *3 IVI/TCU
    ・IVI (In-Vehicle Infotainment): In-vehicle infotainment device
    ・TCU (Telematics Communication Unit): Communication control unit

Reference information

The system is scheduled to be demonstrated at the following exhibitions:
  • • ITS World Congress (Canada)/October 29-November 2, 2017
    http://itsworldcongress2017.org/
    Seminar: Auto SIEM: Security Information and Event Management for Connected Vehicles Takeshi Kishikawa*, Takamitsu Sasaki, Yoshiharu Imamoto, Ryota Takahashi Junichi Tsurumi, Tomoyuki Haga, Hideki Matsushima
  • • escar EU (Germany)/November 7-November 8, 2017
    https://www.escar.info/escar-europe/program.html
    Seminar: Automotive SIEM and Anomaly Detection Using Sand-Sprinkled Isolation Forest Tomoyuki Haga, Ryota Takahashi, Takamitsu Sasaki, Takeshi Kishikawa, Junichi Tsurumi and Hideki Matsushima (Panasonic Corporation)

Source: Panasonic

 

Telit and Husqvarna Collaborate on Robots for Urban Park Sustainability Program

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Telit’s end-to-end IoT solutions are enabling real-time sensor data from robotic lawnmowers that offers valuable insight into green-space environmental conditions and park maintenance

Telit, a global enabler of the Internet of Things (IoT), today announced that Husqvarna is using a wireless sensor device co-developed by Telit and Wireless System Integration (WSI), an award-winning Sweden-based design house developing wireless products and systems, in their city robotic mower pilot program. Cities are using the Husqvarna mowers to collect data about the environment, the quality of air, water, and levels of light and sound, while maintaining the cities’ green spaces, saving time and money, reducing emission and noise pollution.

The mowers cut the grass daily, within a boundary wire, rain or shine, keeping the grass cut and collecting data 24 hours a day from the sensors. The sensors collect real-time data on UV radiation, air quality, ambient noise, luminosity and vibration. The sensor box, designed by Telit, is a first for the industry. The sensor box mounted on top of the mowers, uses the robots’ main battery for power supply, thereby recharging whenever the robot returns to its base. The sensor box transmits the data using Telit’s HE910 cellular module and Telit’s global IoT connectivity data plans (MVNO). The Telit IoT Platform seamlessly connects, manages and delivers the environmental data in a ready-to-use format. In cooperation with Husqvarna, Quantified Planet, an organization that links innovation to science, receives the data and publishes it for citizens to review. The cities can then analyze the environmental data sent by the robots and implement programs to improve the health of its citizens, based on these insights.

“Collecting this city data gives researchers the opportunity to explore and research the health of urban public spaces in a way that has never been done before. By using the Quantified Planet data exploration platform, this new data can provide insights and innovation on how to develop and improve sustainable open green spaces which impact the citizens living nearby. We are excited to be part of the project,” said Maja Brisvall, CEO, Quantified Planet.

“The need for green spaces is growing more and more in urban areas, and it is inspiring to think about how parks in cities will be maintained in the future. I am excited about the pilot program, learning more about the possibility to increase sustainability and productivity in professional landscaping for urban areas,” said Pavel Hajman, President of the Husqvarna Division.

“According to the United Nations, 66 percent of the world’s population will be living in urban areas by 2050, creating sustainability challenges for cities to manage. Cities that are already using IoT are building the infrastructure to manage their assets and relationships with their citizens,” said Yosi Fait, Interim CEO, Telit. “Husqvarna’s city mower program is an example of how cities are using IoT to become more sustainable and efficient. Through this collaboration we have been demonstrating again our unique sensor to cloud capabilities, cutting our customers time to market through our integrated lines of products and services as well through our professional services team’s significant IoT knowhow.”

About Husqvarna
Husqvarna is a brand within Husqvarna Group. Since 1689, Husqvarna has manufactured high performing products and delivered industry-changing innovations such as anti-vibration and automatic chain-break on chainsaws, as well as the world’s first commercial robotic mower. Today, Husqvarna offers a broad range of high performing outdoor power products for parks, forest and garden, and represents technological leadership in the key areas; chainsaws, trimmers, ride-on mowers and robotic mowers. Husqvarna products are sold in more than 100 countries, mainly through servicing dealers.

Husqvarna Group
Husqvarna Group is a world leading producer of outdoor power products including chainsaws, trimmers, robotic lawn mowers and garden tractors. The Group is also the European leader in garden watering products and a world leader in cutting equipment and diamond tools for the construction and stone industries. The Group’s products and solutions are sold under brands including Husqvarna, Gardena, McCulloch, Poulan Pro, Weed Eater, Flymo, Zenoah and Diamant Boart via dealers and retailers to end-customers in more than 100 countries. Net sales in 2016 amounted to SEK 36 billion, and the Group had more than 14,000 employees in 40 countries.

Source: Telit

How UPS deliveries are electrifying London’s streets – and beyond

Urban delivery fleets are often considered the natural environment for electric vehicles, so it stands to reason that a logistics giant such as global parcel company UPS should be one of the pioneers of EVs in the British capital.

The company got into the London plug-in game early, with its first EVs going into service in 2008.

Peter Harris, Director of Sustainability at UPS Europe, said, “A lot of our routes in Central London are relatively short, so we don’t have particular range restriction difficulties and it’s ideal in terms of being able to address some of the pressing air quality concerns the city has.”

PETER HARRIS, DIRECTOR OF SUSTAINABILITY, UPS

Range anxiety is a frequent hang-up for businesses operating electric vehicles. UPS’s London fleet hasn’t been affected by it in the slightest but power supply, which reared its head when the firm reached 10 EVs, has been a far bigger issue. An upgrade to the local supply bought some time and capacity but it wasn’t cheap, nor was it a permanent fix if the plug-in fleet was to expand, so the company looked for alternatives.

“We wanted [something] that would get beyond this conventional grid upgrade, so we’re implementing a technology called a smart grid, which will make much better use of the available energy that was already present throughout the entire charging period but [which] we didn’t have access to, because our vehicles were recharging in the conventional way.”

Via the medium of various different tie-ups, including with Innovate UK – a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy – UPS has embarked on a trial of a smart charging system, with the capacity to optimise the timing and the amount of available power based on grid loads and the fleet’s needs.

Harris explained, “It will be a combination of a conventional grid upgrade with a smart grid, in conjunction with local energy storage. It’s a two-year project that started in April, and we want to come out at the end of it with a strategy on the optimum way to electrify any of our urban fleets. We want to be able to take the strategy into any of our buildings in Europe, or indeed globally, that will allow us to lay out the optimum approach.”

“If this smart grid is successful in the way that we think it will be, it will unlock the ability for us to effectively deploy an entirely electric Central London fleet – that’s all 170 vehicles. If that is the case, then we will certainly plan to proceed down that road.”

The move has allowed the firm to increase the number of electric vehicles based out of its Kentish Town depot. It currently has 52, was limited to 63 by its outgoing power supply, and can now handle a further 20, bringing the total to 72. The trucks themselves are 7.5-tonne items, converted from UPS’s existing diesel vehicles.

UPS CHARGES ITS OWN VEHICLES OFF-GRID AT ITS KENTISH TOWN DEPOT

“What we’ve been doing for the past five or six years is a conversion programme in conjunction with a German company called EFA-S. We take Mercedes Vario-based distribution vehicles – that already have UPS bodies on them – but at mid-life, which is about the seven-year mark, we work with EFA-S to convert them from diesel to electric. Some of the work is done in-house at UPS and some of the work is done in Germany. We’ve done about 150 of them across Europe now and about a third of those are in Central London.

“It’s been a practice that has worked out well for us [but] it’s not where we want to be long term; it’s a bridge technology. We want to eventually to get to the point where we can deploy brand new vehicles from the ground up. The market doesn’t yet supply those, so this is what we are doing in order to not be held back.”

The first 10 of the new vehicles are due to hit the streets in the final quarter of this year, the second 10 in the first quarter of 2018 and, according to Harris, they will perform exactly the same duties as conventional, diesel trucks. “One of the things that we require from our alternative fuel programme is that the vehicles are able to step in and replicate what their diesel predecessor would have done. So if you looked at an electric P80, as we call them, they look exactly the same as their diesel counterpart; even inside as far as the driver is concerned, there is very little change.”

Harris admits that pure electric delivery trucks don’t work in every scenario but says the firm is also working on range extenders capable of switching between internal combustion for the motorway and battery power for zero-emission travel in cities.

UPS CONVERTS VEHICLES MID-LIFE TO RUN ON ELECTRICITY, WITH GERMAN FIRM EFA-S

“For most of our other locations, pure EV is not the perfect solution because [they] require a greater range than a pure EV can, at the moment, provide. To address that challenge, we are working on another technology, also with Innovate UK and in conjunction with a company called Tether, which is a British start-up, and we have developed a range extended EV. It’s just like the EFA-S conversion, but this vehicle also carries a range extender engine, which acts as a series hybrid. It’s not connected to the wheels, but it’s able to drive a generator to put more charge back into the battery during the day.

“Take, for example, the ones that we’re building at the moment, that we intend to deploy in Birmingham. We serve Birmingham from our base in Tamworth; with a pure EV we just can’t get from Tamworth to Birmingham, do a day’s work, and get back again. But what we will do is operate the range extender on the to/from routes, then switch it off at the boundary to the Birmingham city area, so the vehicle operates as a zero-emission EV all day, in Birmingham, just like our EFA-S ones do in London. The driver won’t control it; it will be controlled by geofencing, and the range extender will just be used for that to/from route to enable it to cover the distance.”

Source: SMMT

Hyundai opens data center in China to facilitate connected car growth

connected-car

Hyundai Motor Group has opened a big data center in China’s southwestern province of Guizhou to facilitate the development of its connected car service platform in the world’s largest automobile market.

Korea’s top carmaker said Tuesday the facility will help it process massive amounts of customer data to provide safer and more efficient connected car services to Chinese motorists. It also strives to lead other digital transformation in the automobile industry.

The company also signed an agreement with China Unicom to develop and commercialize a big data analysis model to enhance its competitive edge in the rapidly-growing field. China Unicom is the second-largest wireless carrier of the world’s most populous country.

Hyundai has already established extensive digital infrastructure in Korea, such as Hyundai car cloud and a connected car operating system, to produce safer and more efficiently operating vehicles.

On Tuesday, the firm held an opening ceremony for the big data center, 11 months after it broke ground. It is located in Guizhou’s big data industrial district, which is also home to Apple, Alibaba, IBM and other global IT giants that operate a data processing center there.

Hyundai said it is the first multinational carmaker to open a big data center, which will help it hone its IT technologies and raise its brand value.

“We will do everything we can to successfully operate the center and set an example for other automakers,” Hyundai Motor Vice President Hwang Seung-ho said.

“The facility will further enhance our expertise on how to analyze and use big data. This will significantly boost our capability to create an advanced connected car infrastructure and develop next-generation, wireless internet-based vehicles,” he said. “To launch world-class connected vehicles in the near future, we have bolstered cooperation with U.S. network equipment maker Cisco.”

The center will collect and systemize various data, including motorist behavior and road conditions, and then analyze it to offer more customized and convenient connected car services to each motorist.

Hyundai also plans to use the facility to collect and accumulate other types of data from social networking service platforms and other sources. It will then process data to more accurately predict market trends and consumer preferences, and introduce vehicles and customer service accordingly.

Source: South Korea Times

Ericsson Study: How Network Slicing Pays Off

ericsson

  • Network slicing has the potential to offer economic benefits in terms of higher revenues and lower operating expenditures, if operational automation and a step change in the number of operator service launches is assumed
  • Study found that network slicing is fastest, most cost-effective way to achieve service scalability
  • Payback of investment to automate networks is rapid

In a new study with operator BT, Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC) quantifies the benefits of network slicing for operators. When coupled with operational automation, network slicing is proven to be a smart investment to reduce operating expenditures and increase CAPEX efficiency, while enabling fast implementation and better utilization of devices related to the Internet of Things (IoT).

Mobile data traffic continues to grow at a rapid pace along with adoption of connected devices. In the Ericsson Mobility Report, around 18 billion IoT devices are forecast by 2022. Connected IoT devices include connected cars, machines, meters, sensors, point-of-sales terminals, consumer electronics and wearables.

Network slicing allows operators to segment the network to support particular services and deploy multiple logical networks for different service types over one common infrastructure.  The joint study looked at three ways to introduce new services into a network: via one multi-service network; via individual networks with dedicated resources; or via network slicing including operational automation.

Marielle Lindgren, Head of Ericsson United Kingdom, says: “We found that over a five-year period, introducing new services by using network slicing and operational automation generated 35 percent more revenue than by using one multi-service network. The revenue increased 15 percent when compared to several networks with dedicated resources, demonstrating how the technology enables market stimulation, faster time to market, and opportunities from smaller niche services.”

Maria Cuevas, Head of Mobile Core Networks Research at BT, says: “We’re positioned to bring millions of devices onto our networks as the IoT ecosystem grows. This study gives us guidance as to where our investments will achieve the best results. The more services we deploy with network slicing, the greater economic benefit we will see, enabling us to better serve our customers. In order to achieve this vision, it is important that the industry provides cost-effective solutions to support end-to-end orchestration and adds automation to the operations and management of network slices.”

1-2-3 TO SAVE, GROW AND CONTRIBUTE

Specifically, the study’s base case was a deployment ramping up to 40 annual service launches over five years. Network slicing resulted in the equivalent of 40 percent reduction in OPEX, 35 percent increase in revenue potential and an overall impact of 150 percent increased economic benefit, under the baseline assumptions made. When scaled up, the gains also increased. All benefits were considered in terms of the core network only.

Marielle Lindgren continues: “As applications and use cases for evolving technology become more complex, so will the characteristics of connecting them. Simply put, networks will need to adapt. The findings clearly show that network slicing provides a logical setup that can be tailored to extend into the as-yet undefined services of the future.”

Source: Ericsson

 

Mercedes-Benz combines electricity and hydrogen in EQ Power

Generation EQ, Exterieur, Studio  Generation EQ, exterior, studio

GLC F-CELL goes into preproduction: world’s first electric vehicle with fuel-cell/battery powertrain

At this year’s IAA International Motor Show in Frankfurt, Mercedes-Benz is presenting preproduction models of the new Mercedes-Benz GLC F-CELL as the next milestone on the road to emission-free driving. Under the technology designation EQ Power, the latest electric model (destined for subsequent series production) is set to combine innovative fuel-cell and battery technology in the form of a plug-in hybrid: in addition to hydrogen, the all-electric variant of the popular SUV will also run on electricity. Intelligent interplay between battery and fuel cell, along with short refueling times, will in future make the GLC F-CELL a vehicle of high everyday practicality and also suitable for long-distance motoring. With 4.4 kg of hydrogen on board, the preproduction model produces enough energy for a range of up to 437* km in the NEDC. F-CELL drivers will also benefit from a range of up to 49 km in the NEDC thanks to the large lithium-ion battery. An output of 147 kW guarantees both dynamic performance and locally zero emissions driving pleasure. In unveiling the preproduction vehicles of the Mercedes-Benz GLC F-CELL, Daimler is taking another important step as part of its systematic “CASE” strategy.

Ola Källenius, Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG, responsible for Group Research & Mercedes-Benz Cars Development, emphasizes: “Our many years of experience with fuel-cell technology pay dividends in the new GLC F-CELL: its long electric range, short refueling times and everyday practicality of an SUV will make it the perfect vehicle. This is made possible by the compact construction of our fuel-cell system. Another genuine world first is the combination with a large additional lithium-ion battery, which can be conveniently charged using plug-in technology.”

Fuel-cell technology is a firm element of Daimler’s powertrain strategy. Under the EQ product brand, the company is pooling its know-how related to intelligent electric mobility while offering a comprehensive e-mobility ecosystem of products, services, technologies and innovations. EQ is therefore a key part of the company’s strategy for the mobility of the future, known at Daimler as “CASE.” The four letters stand for the strategic future pillars of networking (Connected), autonomous driving (Autonomous), flexible use (Shared & Services) and electric drive systems (Electric), which are being systematically further developed and intelligently combined by the company. Between now and 2022, Daimler intends to bring out ten battery-electric vehicles, globally, with the GLC F-CELL representing an important landmark.

Unique: two electric energy sources

The vehicles unveiled at the IAA represent a world first in which a fuel-cell-operated electric car uses a lithium-ion battery as an additional energy source that can be externally charged by means of plug-in technology. Through intelligent interplay, the two energy sources drive the electric motor while offering locally zero emissions driving pleasure. The long range, short refueling time, an output of 197 hp and the latest generation of assistance systems with powertrain-specific features demonstrate, based on the models on show, that the GLC F-CELL will be a family-friendly electric vehicle of high everyday practicality.

For this world first, the Mercedes-Benz engineers cooperated closely with partners from the Daimler competence network to develop a completely new fuel-cell system. Compared with the B-Class F-CELL, which has been on the market since 2010, the overall drive system offers around 40 percent more output. The fuel-cell system is around 30 percent more compact than before, can for the first time be housed entirely in the engine compartment and is installed on the usual mounting points like a conventional engine. Also, the use of platinum in the fuel cell has been reduced by 90 percent. This conserves resources while lowering the system costs – with no compromises in terms of performance.

The lithium-ion battery in the preproduction vehicles on show has a gross capacity of 13.8 kWh and additionally serves as an energy source for the electric motor. For the first time, it can also be charged externally using plug-in technology. An intelligent operating strategy in combination with the fuel-cell/battery system offers maximum efficiency and comfort. Just like the drive motor, the powerful storage battery is space-savingly installed in the rear of the SUV. By means of the 7.2 kW on-board chargers, it can be conveniently charged from a standard household power socket, a wallbox or a public charging station. The charging time is around 1.5 hours if the full capacity is used.

Two carbon-fiber-encased tanks built into the vehicle floor hold around 4.4 kg of hydrogen. Thanks to globally standardized 700 bar tank technology, the supply of Daimler Communications, 70546 Stuttgart, Germany Mercedes-Benz – A Daimler Brand hydrogen can be replenished within just three minutes, which is about the same amount of time it takes to refuel a car with an internal combustion engine.

The F-CELL vehicles on show at the IAA are powered by an asynchronous machine with an output of 197 hp and a torque of 258 lb-ft. As the electric drive requires no propeller shaft, this makes room for one of the two hydrogen tanks, while the second tank is installed under the rear seat bench.

Coordinated: operating strategy with unique variety of combinations

Like the GLC Plug-in Hybrid, the fuel-cell variant comes with various operating modes and drive programs. The drive programs of the GLC F-CELL will include ECO, COMFORT and SPORT. ECO is optimized for low consumption. COMFORT is geared not only for comfort, but also provides ideal climate control. SPORT optimizes the hybrid powertrain for sporty performance.

While the drive programs change the behavior of the car and therefore the driving experience, the operating modes influence the interplay between fuel cell and high-voltage battery. The combination of drive programs with operating modes is presented for the first time in this form in a fuel-cell vehicle.

Freedom of choice: four operating modes HYBRID – F-CELL – BATTERY – CHARGE The innovative plug-in fuel-cell powertrain combines the advantages of both emission-free technologies and, thanks to its intelligent operating strategy, constantly ensures that the use of both energy sources is optimally adapted to the particular operating situation.

In HYBRID operating mode, the vehicle draws power from both energy sources. Power peaks are handled by the battery, while the fuel cell runs in the optimum efficiency range. The intelligent operating strategy means that the characteristics of both energy sources can be ideally exploited. In F-CELL mode, the state of charge of the high-voltage battery is kept constant by the energy from the fuel cell. Driving almost exclusively on hydrogen is the ideal mode if the intention is to keep the electric range in reserve for certain driving situations. Daimler Communications, 70546 Stuttgart, Germany Mercedes-Benz – A Daimler Brand In BATTERY mode, the GLC F-CELL runs all-electrically and is powered by the high-voltage battery. The fuel-cell system is not in operation. This is the ideal mode for short distances.

In CHARGE mode, charging the high-voltage battery has priority, for example in order to recharge the battery for the maximum overall range prior to refueling with hydrogen. This mode also creates power reserves for uphill or very dynamic driving.

In all operating modes, the system features an energy recovery function, which makes it possible to recover energy during braking or coasting and to store it in the battery.

Safety first: getting there safely Daimler applies extremely high safety standards in all its vehicles. This is true of both vehicles with a conventional internal combustion engine and also those with an alternative drive. This means that the vehicles comply with all legal standards and regulations. However, the internal safety requirements for Mercedes-Benz vehicles go one step further. The battery and all hydrogen-containing components are governed by particularly stringent safety standards typical of Mercedes. Alongside safety in the event of a crash, all Mercedes-Benz vehicles undergo additional component tests at system level that go far beyond the usual tests. The powertrain components and hydrogen tanks of the F-CELL preproduction vehicles are space-savingly and safely housed in the engine compartment as well as under the floor.

Like all Mercedes-Benz vehicles, the fuel-cell vehicles, too, are exemplary in terms of active and passive safety. With Active Distance Assist DISTRONIC, Lane Tracking Package with Blind Spot Assist and Active Lane Keeping Assist, Parking Package with 360° camera or COMAND with traffic sign recognition, the GLC F-CELL will come with safety and comfort built in as standard.

Self-assured: with the DNA of a genuine Mercedes The GLC F-CELL models on show at the IAA demonstrate the high expectations on a Mercedes-Benz and all Mercedes-Benz brand values in terms of comfort, sustainability, safety, quality and design. When it comes to loading capacity and occupant comfort, the electric SUV will offer excellent everyday practicality. The only differences will be a minimal step in the luggage compartment, familiar from the GLC Plug-in-Hybrid, and the slightly raised rear seat bench due to the Daimler Communications, 70546 Stuttgart, Germany Mercedes-Benz – A Daimler Brand positioning of the hydrogen tanks. Climate comfort in the GLC F-CELL will also be totally on a par with that in a conventional vehicle. Automatic air conditioning with pre-entry climate control as well as heated seats and mirrors are included as standard. At cooler temperatures, the vehicle will make energy-efficient use of the waste heat from the fuel cell in order to optimize the energy balance of the vehicle.

The series-production vehicle, like the preproduction models, will be equipped with coil springs on the front axle and with single-chamber air suspension with integral automatic level control on the rear axle. This means that, even when the vehicle is carrying a load, there is no change in spring travel on the rear axle, which guarantees balanced vibration characteristics with a virtually constant natural frequency of the body, including when the vehicle is loaded. Unmistakable: Touches in the style of EQ Power The F-CELL models on display at the IAA embody the current Mercedes-Benz design philosophy of Sensual Purity. The design premises include features that emphasize the special status in general and within the GLC family in particular. These design premises are the formal on-road attributes and the technical modifications to the exterior and interior as well as the control and display concept. Blue touches on the radiator grille and light-alloy wheels, side skirts and rear bumper on the one hand, as well as classy style wraps with F-CELL inscription on the other, provide a clearly visible indication of the fuel-cell drive. Specifically styled bumpers, with an enlarged air inlet at the front, as well as aerodynamically optimized 20-inch wheels are the hallmarks of the vehicles on show at the IAA. The interior impresses with its high-grade look & feel and flowing forms as a reinterpretation of contemporary luxury. The center console features elegant trim with flowing lines exuding unique exclusivity in a piano-lacquer look or versatile modern wood surfaces.

Precision-styled details and the choice of authentic materials by using open-pore wood as trim and a high proportion of wool and linen for the fabric covers, make for an agreeable ambience while contributing to the classy overall impression of the interior.

The cockpit will be further enhanced by the instrument cluster in the form of a full display with 12.3-inch diagonal. Information from the COMAND system is presented on the 10.25-inch central display. The menus and indicators on the Daimler Communications, 70546 Stuttgart, Germany Mercedes-Benz – A Daimler Brand displays are geared to the functionality of the combined fuel-cell/battery powertrain. The new-type design style clearly differentiates the fuel-cell vehicle from the conventional GLC. New in the GLC F-CELL is the multifunction touchpad with handwriting recognition, which celebrates its world debut at the IAA in the unveiled preproduction vehicles. This newly developed feature allows telematics functions to be controlled by single- or multi-finger gestures (so-called Multitouch). The touchpad thus offers a full-function and innovative input option over and above LINGUATRONIC in combination with COMAND. The touchpad also makes it possible to enter letters, numbers and special characters by means of handwriting. Further control options are offered by Touch Control buttons on the left and right of the steering wheel as well as by voice control. Timed to perfection: on the road to series production

Daimler is systematically working to prepare for series production of the Mercedes-Benz GLC F-CELL. With the current test fleet, the Mercedes-Benz engineers are taking the final key steps on the road to production start-up. Market-specific sales concepts, including a rental model, are being evaluated at present. Like the conventionally powered GLC, this family-friendly SUV of high everyday practicality will be produced in Bremen. During development and production of the innovative fuel-cell drive, Daimler is able to call upon its global competence network. The centerpiece of the technology, the fuel-cell stack, was developed in Vancouver, Canada, together with partner Ford in the Automotive Fuel Cell Cooperation (AFCC) joint venture. Production takes place directly nearby at Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell (MBFC). The entire fuel-cell unit and the hydrogen storage system were developed by the Daimler subsidiary NuCellSys in Kirchheim/Nabern in Baden-Württemberg. The Daimler parent plant in Untertürkheim is responsible for fuel-cell system assembly, also in Nabern. The hydrogen tank system, consisting of carbon-fiber-encased tanks, is produced at Daimler’s Mannheim plant, while the lithium-ion battery comes from the wholly owned Daimler subsidiary ACCUMOTIVE in Kamenz, Saxony.

Infrastructure is key A nationwide infrastructure is essential for the success of electric mobility. The spread of both charging stations and hydrogen filling stations is proceeding apace around the world. Whether at home, at work, on the road or when shopping  there are various ways to supply electric vehicles with power. Also when it comes to H2 infrastructure, progress is constantly being made. Together with its partners in the H2 Mobility joint venture, Daimler has already drawn up a concrete action plan. The network of H2 filling stations is scheduled to reach 100 by the end of next year.

By 2023, there will be a network of up to 400 hydrogen filling stations. Similar infrastructure projects are being promoted in Europe, the USA and Japan. Systematic approach: Daimler opts for electric mobility with fuel cell It all began back in the 1980s, when Daimler researchers turned their attention to cold combustion. In 1994, Mercedes-Benz unveiled the first fuel-cell vehicle to the global public – the NECAR 1. Many further vehicles followed, including the A-Class F-CELL fleet. In 2011, special attention focused on the F-CELL World Drive, the first round-the-world journey in fuel-cell vehicles. In 2015, the F 015 Luxury in Motion concept car presented an F-CELL plug-in hybrid drive system, designed for 1,100 kilometers of zero emissions motoring. To date, fuel-cell vehicles from Mercedes-Benz, including the B-Class F-CELL and the Citaro FuelCELL Hybrid urban bus, have together covered over eighteen million kilometers, thereby demonstrating the maturity of the powertrain concept. The next technological advance is now imminent: the GLC F-CELL.

The Mercedes-Benz GLC F-CELL will celebrate its World Premiere at the 2017 Frankfurt International Auto Show in September, and will go on sale in the U.S. by the end of 2019.

Technical data of preproduction vehicles (IAA) CO2 emissions: 0 g/km
H2 range in Hybrid mode (NEDC): 437* km
Battery-electric range in Battery mode (NEDC) 49 km
Drive system: Electric motor
Battery: Lithium-ion
Fuel cell: PEM (polymer electrolyte fuel cell)
Rated output: 197 hp
Max. torque: 258 lb-ft
Top speed: 99 mph (electronically limited)
H2 tank capacity: 4.4 kg (usable for SAE J2601, 2014 or new)
Battery capacity (gross/net): 13.8 kWh /9.3 kWh

The Evolution of Cellular Modems for Enterprise Networking

Evolution of Cellular Modems

Embedded Wireless Modems Eliminated the Challenges of External, USB-Based Modems

Wireless modems and connectivity for enterprise networking have come a long way. A variety of factors ranging from technological advancements to innovative customer use cases have transformed cellular modems into a critical component of how a company operates and succeeds — and with 5G on the horizon, that progress is poised to continue.

When modems were first introduced, they were analog, used DSL, and had a simple function: allow computers to connect and pass data to networks. With the advent of cellular technology came the possibility of sending data over wireless connections. This demonstrated the potential of wireless connections for both business and personal use.

The leap to modems that could transfer data wirelessly was significant but difficult. Passing data back and forth through the air was slow, limiting the types and volumes of data that companies could reasonably transfer wirelessly.

The Evolution of USB Modems

In response to the challenges associated with the first wireless modems, manufacturers took another evolutionary step and created USB modems. The first examples were the sleek, stick-like versions that many are familiar with today, but they were not very practical in customer applications.

With the introduction of 3G, individual users could transfer data much easier and faster via a USB modem connected to a laptop. Before Starbucks offered free WiFi to its customers, for example, a professional working remotely from a coffee shop could potentially use a USB modem and his or her laptop to connect to the Internet using cellular technology. Thanks to 3G, this connection was finally reliable and fast enough to truly make remote work — and access — possible.

As 3G developed into a viable data transfer mechanism, Cradlepoint realized the potential it presented and began adding support for USB modems in its routers. If an enterprise bought a router, it could get a USB modem from a provider (such as AT&T or Sprint) and plug it in; the device would then be able to connect. This setup essentially created the first forms of WiFi hot spots, as the Cradlepoint router was able to share a connection to the Internet.

Eliminating the Challenges of USB Modems

Customer creativity complemented, and even advanced, the technological evolution of modems. As wireless routers were able to transfer data more reliably and quickly, customers began using them in new, innovative ways. While in-vehicle deployment wasn’t necessarily part of the initial goal for developing wireless routers, emergency responders saw the potential of deploying wireless access in their vehicles.

However, USB modems presented unique challenges — most notably, form factor and durability. For instance, when police cars or ambulances took sharp turns quickly during emergencies, modems often were damaged or simply broke off. They weren’t designed to work in such conditions.

Further, USB modems stick out from whatever device they’re plugged into to, making them easy to steal by passersby.

When 3G eventually evolved into 4G, the USB stick modems were still in use by customers, but they started to prefer a smaller-footprint, embedded solution. Thus, Cradlepoint began buying the actual modem modules from vendors directly and embedding them into higher-quality, more compact enterprise routers — eliminating the challenges related to USB sticks.

The Benefits of Embedded Modems

The evolution from 3G to 4G ushered in significant improvements for connectivity. With 3G, some companies (such as Verizon and Sprint) were based on CDMA technology, while others (such as AT&T and T-Mobile) were based on GSM technology. The two technologies had disparate 3G speeds, and CDMA-based companies needed a way to increase their speeds. 4G and LTE met the challenge.

4G has ushered in a new chapter of modem evolution. Modern routers provide many more enhancements and solutions than the simple connected/disconnected features offered by the earliest USB devices.

Customer use cases have helped drive enhancements and solutions, too. Modems that used to be damaged in high-speed situations in ambulances and police cars, for instance, are now field-tested and shock-certified specifically for in-vehicle use.

Additional advancements include Auto Carrier Selection. With carrier-switchable embedded modems, Cradlepoint can self-detect the SIM and configure the modem to the given carrier automatically. This significantly boosts flexibility and reduces IT man-hours.

Of course, modems will never stop evolving. The combination of consumer creativity and technological innovation will always create new and exciting steps forward. Over its history, Cradlepoint has supported as many as 300 types of modems and continues to learn from its experiences supporting the evolution from USB devices to embedded modems. Overall, Cradlepoint continues to build on current LTE technologies and looks forward to the transition to 5G.

Source: Janice Mainvil-Cradlepoint

Volocopter Flying Taxis to Revolutionise Urban Transport

Daimler-Volocopter-830x467

The objective of making flying possible for everyone has drawn closer:  In July 2017 the aviation start-up Volocopter agreed a finance deal over 25 million Euros with the automobile firm Daimler from Stuttgart, the technology investor Lukasz Gadowski from Berlin and further investors. Using this fresh capital  Volocopter will further expand upon the leading technology in its purely electrically driven VTOLs, (eVTOL), speed up the introduction process of the Volocopter serial model and conquer the market for flying air taxis. The safe, quiet and environmentally friendly aircraft, suitable for transporting two passengers, will revolutionize mobility in metropolises. In order to realize this vision Volocopter also invests in its team and  plans to continuously develop it further.

volocopter-2x-innercity-preview

Volocopter is up for a soaring start not just because of the successful round of funding: As early as in June the young enterprise already won top place in the international run for the world’s first pilot project involving air taxis in urban spaces. In the fourth quarter of 2017 Volocopter, together with the state transport authority „Roads and Transport Authority“ (RTA) in Dubai, will conduct initial demonstrations of an autonomous air taxi. By 2030 Dubai aims to carry out 25% of its passenger transportation with the help of autonomous means of transport.

“The strong financial commitment of our new investors is a signal as well as proof of the growing confidence in the newly emerging market for electrically driven VTOLs put to use as personal air taxis“  Florian Reuter, managing director of Volocopter, is pleased to point out. “We deliberately sought a mix of investors with strategic and entrepreneurial backgrounds  and were able to implement this perfectly with Daimler und Lukasz Gadowski”.

Automobile companies specifically are intensely interested in the mobility of the future – in autonomous driving or electrical mobility for example. Daimler is therefore a very valuable strategic partner for Volocopter. “We are world leaders in the development of electrical VTOL aircraft” says Reuter, “and for it to stay that way in the future we are very pleased with the participation of the worldwide leader in automobiles”.

The investor Lukasz Gadowski on the other hand, can support the aviation start-up in very different ways: He has already successfully founded and financed numerous enterprises. Gadowski has enormous experience in the fast and global scaling of tech start-ups. This will be of great value to Volocopter in asserting itself on the global market. “I have been interested in flying cars and following their development for a while. When I saw the Volocopter I got it: The “flying car” has no wheels! What is exciting at Volocopter is not just the magnificent vision but also that which has already been tangibly implemented. Huge ambition with both feet on the ground – a unique combination! In the coming years we can expect a revolution in manned aviation. We at Volocopter will significantly contribute to shaping it!”

Together with its partners, Volocopter will be using the new funding to further expand upon technical innovations and its pioneering role within the emerging industry. The plan is to further the development of the Volocopter up to production maturity and commercial licensing through aviation authorities worldwide. Amongst other things, extensive test flight programs are envisaged for this purpose. In order to speed up progress, the employment of additional engineers specialized in the development of flight systems, software and electric propulsion as well as the development of commercial function is envisaged.

To introduce the Volocopter serial model to the market with full impact the company will also apply the investment to developing brand awareness. The prelude to this will be the new website which is launched today. In addition a professional communications team all around marketing and PR will be installed in order to be optimally equipped for planned events and demonstrations of the Volocopter in the coming months. This will create additional interest and customers for the Volocopter – besides RTA in Dubai.


About Volocopter

Volocopter GmbH is the global leader in the development of vertically launching, fully electrical multicopters for the transport of people and of heavy lifting cargo drones. The technical platform is extremely flexible and permits piloted, remote controlled and fully autonomous flight. In addition, the unique design offers a huge degree of safety based on the high redundancy of all critical components. The company’s stated objective is to make every human’s dream of flying come true and to help modern cities resolve their increasing mobility issues. As early as 2011 the company earned its entry into the history of aviation through the manned flight of the world’s first purely electrical multicopter. Since then the young enterprise has set new milestones: In 2016 Volocopter was granted provisional licensing for a two seater Volocopter by the German aviation authority and in 2017 the aviation start-up entered into an agreement with RTA Dubai over the global premiere of an autonomously flying air taxi. The first licensed Volocopter should be on the market next year. In the meantime, the founders Stephan Wolf and Alexander Zosel have gathered an excellentteam of experienced managers like CEO Florian Reuter (formerly of Siemens) and CTO Jan-Hendrik Boelens (formerly of Airbus Helicopters). This paved the way for the further expansion of the company.

25 Million Euros for Volocopter
⋅ Lukasz Gadowski and the Daimler AG are amongst investors
⋅ Increased investment flows into the launch of the Volocopter

Souce: Volocopter