New trial testing the effectiveness of 5G on garbage trucks

Innovative 5G garbage truck technology trialled

A research collaboration between Swinburne University of Technology and Brimbank City Council in Victoria is trialling the use of the 5G network and Internet of Things to increase the efficiency of the council’s maintenance service.

The project will see high-resolution cameras and GPS sensors attached to Brimbank’s waste trucks.

The data captured from these connected devices will be sent in real-time to a cloud-based system that can create an easy-to-use map of assets that require maintenance, such as road signs, bus shelters or damaged roads.

Innovative 5G garbage truck technology trialled
Associate Professor Prem Prakash Jayaraman works with Dr. Felip Marti Carrillo and Dr. Yong-Bin Kang (left to right). Image courtesy of Swinburne University of Technology.

It is expected that the technology will help to reduce the time it takes to identify, document and fix issues, remove the need for costly manual reporting and auditing, and save up to 50 per cent of asset auditing costs.

Brimbank Mayor Cr Jasmine Nguyen has welcomed the partnership, saying the project will help to lead the way for other councils considering 5G solutions.

“This innovative 5G-based project offers us a quicker and more efficient way to identify which assets need maintenance, and to get the information to the work crews. Simply put, this project will help Council respond faster to assets that need maintenance,” Nguyen said.

The stereo vision and depth cameras attached to the garbage trucks will collect 3D perception data at a rate of 900 megabits per second.  For comparison, average mobile download speeds in Australia in 2020 were around 43 megabits per second.

As part of the project, maintenance teams will be able to get information directly on their phones and upload proof of maintenance performed on the spot.

The project is being supported by $1.18 million in funding from the Federal Government’s Australian 5G Innovation Initiative.


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