We enter the first tunnel with 5G technology in Spain

It is on the A-6 near Lugo and it is the first tunnel in Spain that has 5G connectivity. These are its characteristics. 5G coverage will mean a before and after in terms of connectivity and basic technology for the evolution of autonomous cars.

Its implementation is still very limited but some trials are already taking place, such as this one carried out in the Cereixal tunnel on the A6, in the province of Lugo. It is the only one in Spain that has 5G technology and arises thanks to a pioneering project developed by Telefónica, in collaboration with Nokia, Ineco, Stellantis, Centro Tecnológico de Automoción de Galicia (CTAG) and SICE.

Tunnel with 5G technology

Its operation is as follows. The intelligent tunnel sends information to drivers about the weather conditions at the exit, possible works, warnings that a slow vehicle is circulating inside, traffic jams, accidents, obstacles in the road, presence of pedestrians, vehicle in the opposite direction, or sudden braking During your journey, also the notice of entry of an emergency vehicle. All thanks to the technology for vehicle communications C-V2X (cellular vehicle-to-everything) and IoT (Internet of Things) sensorization and edge computing offered by a 5G network.

The tunnel is constantly monitored by different sensors (pollution, sliding pavement, visibility, weather station) as well as by cameras such as DAI (accident detection), thermal, dangerous goods control, for electric vehicles.

The tunnel is constantly monitored by different sensors.

All this information is collected by the main manager who analyzes it and, if deemed necessary, issues an alert and warnings to the vehicles that transit it. For its implementation, it has been necessary to deploy 5G antennas that provide coverage both inside and outside the tunnel, IoT (internet of things) sensors and video cameras, as well as a MEC (Multi-access Edge Computing) server near the station base that covers the vehicles. A 5G router is also included in the tunnel itself to be able to collect information about what is happening in it through the IoT sensors and installed cameras.

Useful information for the driver

As for the vehicles, they mount a communications unit called TCU (Transmission Control Unit) to become connected. An app has also been developed that can be downloaded to a 5G smartphone so that drivers receive alerts even if their vehicle does not carry the aforementioned TCU. In this way, the range of monitored vehicles is expanded.

Information is received from a control center in real-time including live video images, to know what is happening inside the infrastructure. As a result, those responsible have all the information centralized in the system. It can also be accessed from any geographical point, as well as interacting with the vehicles/drivers themselves and, ultimately, making management more efficient, fast, interactive, and safe.

The vehicles that are being used in this pilot test are DS7, DS4, and Peugeot Traveler.

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