First 4G rail comms network to be deployed in South Korea

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High-speed Korail train. Photo: KYTan / shutterstock.com.

South Korea’s rail infrastructure manager, Korea Rail Network Authority (KRNA), has appointed Nokia to establish an LTE-R communications network on its new high-speed railway between Wonju and Gangneung.

Nokia, which has been at the forefront of developing LTE-R technology for the rail industry, has described the network as the first of its kind anywhere in the world.

LTE-R is based on the same 4G LTE technology used by mobile phone network providers. Earlier this year, Nokia and RATP trialled a 4G LTE system on Line 14 of the Paris Metro.

As Gangneung is set to host some of the events, KRNA aims to commission the network in time for the 2018 Winter Olympics.

Nokia said, in addition to railway operations, the network will support public safety and maritime operations on top of legacy very high frequency (VHS) and trunked radio system (TRS) radio networks.

Andrew Cope, head of Korea at Nokia, said: “South Korea has been a world leader in the use of mobile broadband technology to make public services of all kinds safer, more efficient and reliable.

“With a thirty-year history in the delivery of GSM-R mobile networking technology for railways, and as a pioneer in the development of LTE-R solutions, we are pleased to partner with KRNA to bring these cutting edge capabilities to the country as they prepare to host one of the world’s premier sporting events.”

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