UAE based oil company ADNOC and telco and tech group e& have announced a strategic partnership to build the energy sector’s largest private 5G network.

Spanning 11,000 sq km, the network is planned to deliver high-bandwidth connectivity across ADNOC’s onshore and offshore operations and enabling the energy firm to integrate its advanced artificial intelligence (AI) solutions at its most remote facilities. This, the firm states, will reduce costs through automation, improve efficiency, minimise emissions, while also improving worker safety.

The network build is due to be completed in 2025 and is expected to generate $1.5 billion (AED5.5 billion) in value during its first five years of operation. The private 5G network is part of a multi-year program that is aimed to accelerate the deployment of a suite of AI solutions across the energy firm’s value chain and become what it touts as “the world’s most AI-enabled energy company”.

“This landmark project with e& is a milestone step in ADNOC’s journey to become the world’s most AI-enabled energy company” said UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology who is also ADNOC Managing Director and Group CEO, H.E. Dr. Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber. “Global demand is rising for both energy and AI, so by investing in cutting-edge connectivity across our operations, we can ensure that we continue providing secure, reliable and responsible energy to our customers. As we grow our diversified energy portfolio, this strategic partnership will generate value and enable us to make faster, smarter decisions, from the control room to the boardroom, future-proof our business and keep our people and the environment safe.”

The completed 5G network will be able to relay information from sensors embedded in more than 12,000 wells and pipelines to autonomous control rooms. This the announcement says will help make real-time recommendations to increase the lifespan of assets and ensure field safety.

In addition to field and worker safety, the network will be able to drive productivity across ADNOC’s entire value chain as the private network also enables the digitalisation of wellheads and provide end-to-end visibility over operations.

“e&’s collaboration with ADNOC will enable the creation of a cutting-edge private 5G network underscoring our dedication to harnessing technology and powering sustainable and intelligent transformation in the energy sector” said e& chairman, H. E. Jassem Mohamed Bu Ataba Alzaabi.

“With connectivity being the backbone of technological advancements, we’re leveraging our expertise as a pioneer in network and AI innovations to drive breakthroughs in the energy sector and spur progress and success across industries. Beyond this partnership, we continue to work with ADNOC and other major players across multiple sectors to set new industry standards and redefine what’s possible.”

As private 5G is often considered a key 5G monetisation use case yet slow to take up (for various reasons), it is encouraging to see the collaboration between enterprises/verticals and the telecom sector, specifically telecom operators. Some of the key driving factors for enterprises to adopt private networks involve what may be considered the most mundane of use cases including coverage and worker safety (as compared to futuristic remote surgery type of use cases). However, they are key requirements for enterprises and therefore, service providers that understand these needs are able to position their offerings accordingly.  

Original article can be seen at: