The UK Government has announced plans for a new 5G engineering hub in Oxfordshire for businesses and researchers to explore the potential of hybrid 5G and satellite communications networks.
Backed by more than GBP 3 million of government funding and scheduled for completion in 2021, the testing facility will be built by IT and business consultancy CGI in ESA-ECSAT at the Harwell Campus. The hub will develop software for satellite networks, including LEO networks, to integrate with terrestrial public and private communications networks, creating new business opportunities for mobile network providers and app developers.
The centre is backed by a ESA contract. As part of the development, CGI is working with BT, Avanti Communications and the University of Surrey on a project to connect rural communities to 5G in the most affordable way.