Verizon brings 5G to Mcity auto test facility

By | September 13, 2019
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An aerial view of the Mcity test facility, which sits on a 32-acre site and features about 16 acres of roads and traffic infrastructure. (University of Michigan)

On Sept. 10, Verizon announced that its 5G Ultra Wideband network is now live at U-M’s Mcity test facility, where they’re using various 5G solutions designed to improve pedestrian and auto safety. That includes 5G-connected cameras installed at intersections inside the Mcity test track to help identify traffic and pedestrian patterns to prevent collisions.

Signal controllers were installed at intersections within Mcity that provide signal phase and timing data to the 5G network. That way, they can help drivers “see” things before the human eye can register and thereby prevent collisions by changing the traffic signals when there’s a safety risk.

“Testing new technologies in a safe, controlled environment is essential before deploying automated vehicles on public streets and highways,” said Greg McGuire, associate director at Mcity, in a statement. “By giving the companies who are testing here access to Verizon’s 5G network, we’re hoping they can improve on their existing technology and potentially create applications that don’t even exist yet to make our roads and intersections safer.”