EIT Digital to develop rapidly deployable networks for disaster situations

EIT Digital to develop rapidly deployable networks for disaster situations

EIT Digital, the leading European open innovation organisation, is launching a new Innovation Activity to develop Rapidly Deployable Network solutions for manmade or natural disaster situations. The Innovation Activity joins the resources of top EIT Digital Partners from Finland, France, Germany and Italy in a bid to support communities across Europe by developing a rapidly deployable secure and robust wireless communication solution for emergency situations where the standard public network is compromised or not sufficient.

"Current network systems cannot guarantee communications in manmade or natural disaster situations, especially when it comes to internet communications requirements. The capability to rapidly deploy local communication capacity in disaster situations is needed in our increasingly Internet of Things dependant societies", says Ari Hulkkonen, Senior Manager, Research and Technology at Bittium Wireless Ltd, and the EIT Digital Innovation Activity leader for Rapidly Deployable Networks.

The Rapidly Deployable Networks innovation activity aims to provide a deployable wireless communications solution that is flexible and comprises automatic configuration and self-organising-networks. The end goal is to produce user-friendly services with minimum configuration needed, flexible interfaces to user equipment and connections to other systems such as public safety and tactical networks and even commercial mobile phone networks.

"An operational communication network is a dramatically valuable asset for authorities and rescue organisations struggling often in extreme conditions to save lives and property. As the rapidly deployable network configures itself according to the available resources and the environment, and selects the best connections, best routes for data and voice and re-configures itself automatically - as necessary - it will deliver this asset", Mr. Hulkkonen explains.

In addition to the primary target of the rapidly growing public safety communications market, the resulting Rapidly Deployable Network technology will also be applied to special applications such as tactical communications, industrial applications plants, and the mining and energy sectors which will increase the activity’s business potential. The concept will be further developed to provide bespoke products to meet individual customer requirements.

In addition to Bittium Wireless Ltd (Finland), other EIT Digital partners participating in the Rapidly Deployable Networks Innovation Activity include: Technische Universität Berlin (Germany), Green Communications SAS (France), and STMicroelectronics Srl (Italy).

EIT Digital seeks to generate significant innovations from top European research. As such, we focus our investments on a limited number of innovation areas known as Innovation Action Lines, that we have selected with respect to their European relevance and leadership potential. Each Innovation Action Line comprises a portfolio of activities including:
  • open innovation activities carried out by the EIT Digital Partners, and 
  • fast-growing technology startups that are ready to scale commercially. 
Our innovation activities deliver new products or services, create startups and spinoffs to commercialise outputs from projects, and encourage the transfer of technologies for market entry.

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