South Korea’s LG Uplus announced on Tuesday that it signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with U.S.-based PoteNit to develop a 5G-based smart port logistics automation business.
PoteNit, headquartered in San Jose, California, specializes in the development of autonomous mobility robots (AMR). The company provides artificial intelligence (AI) solutions, such as retrofitting autonomous forklifts and integrating robotics management systems in warehouses.
The team-up would establish a solution that combines the automated and unmanned technologies of logistics from PoteNit, and 5G technology from LG Uplus. The two companies aim to launch 5G smart port centered on the development of logistics automation in 2021.
Specifically, both companies would collaborate on the advancement of self-driving technologies for 5G-powered unmanned facilities, and establish a mobile edge computing (MEC)-based control system. They would also link unmanned facilities with 5G network infrastructure, and remote control of autonomous facilities with ultra-low-latency technology.
Both companies intend to accomplish in the first half of this year their product planning and create in the second half service situations structured on an analysis of logistics facilities and environments.
If logistics automation service becomes commercialized, logistics facilities can transport containers autonomously with control centers that can execute monitoring and remote control by a handful of personnel.
Increased cost reduction and field site prevention of safety accidents are expected because of the resulting operation efficiency from facilities automation.
According to Seo Jae-yong, LG Uplus would actively seek to commercialize and verify related technologies to convert local ports into smart ports. Seo is the executive vice president of convergence business at LG Uplus.
Meanwhile, LG Uplus partnered with Seoho Electric to demonstrate the world’s first smart port operation grounded on a 5G commercial network in August last year at the Busan Port. The company pushes for “5G Smart Port” developments by completing the connection of unmanned automation and logistics systems by the end of 2020 and plans for commercialization by 2021.