AT&T and MxD announced they are working together to help accelerate the deployment of 5G to the U.S. manufacturing industry. AT&T is collaborating with MxD (Manufacturing times Digital) to install 5G technology and Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) within MxD’s Chicago-based innovation center dedicated to advancing manufacturing innovation. MxD, formerly the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII), is a non-profit that brings hundreds of partners together to advance the future of the U.S. manufacturing industry.
“AT&T will bring a new perspective to our mission of helping U.S. manufacturers build every part better than the last,” said Chandra Brown, CEO of MxD. “This is the first time we will bring a communications technology provider into our institute. By including AT&T’s 5G network into our manufacturing testbed, our partners will get firsthand access to 5G technology to co-create use cases and test advanced digital manufacturing applications for the future of the industry.”
5G Millimeter Wave (mmWave) TechnologyAT&T will install 5G millimeter wave (mmWave) technology to cover parts of MxD’s 22,000 square foot factory floor. AT&T also expects to bring industry-related technologies, applications, and new collaborations to the research space to test manufacturing-related 5G use cases such as Industrial IoT, predictive maintenance, remote machine monitoring, autonomous robots, mixed reality training, and spatial computing.
In addition, AT&T plans to test and showcase its MEC solution. Using MEC, MxD partners will be able to test manufacturing capabilities that use locally-processed data for faster processing and lower latency, while boosting security in cloud services.
“5G has real potential to be one of the platforms that truly unleashes the power of Industry 4.0”, said Jeff Wilcox, Vice President of Enterprise Transformation at Lockheed Martin and MxD Board Member. “We see the lower latency and high bandwidth of 5G as being key to creating the communication and processing infrastructure at the heart of the smart factory ecosystem.”