ABB utilising 5G-based industrial AI application in Finland

Friday, 07 June, 2019

ABB utilising 5G-based industrial AI application in Finland

Chinese news agency Xinhua has reported that an ABB plant in Helsinki producing low-voltage drives has started using a 5G wireless-based artificial intelligence application for routine production purposes, which it said it believed was the first application of its kind in the world.

"This is not an academic exercise, but actual production and as such a unique first step in the incorporation of 5G and artificial intelligence," Simo Saynevirta, head of digitisation projects at ABB Finland, told Xinhua on Wednesday.

While the new 5G artificial intelligence ensures better work quality, it also reduces the concern about human errors and thus improves wellbeing at work. Besides errors related to the actual installation work, the system alerts the employee about ergonomically wrong body or hand positions.

The use of the new system started this week at an assembly line that is said to be particularly demanding for workers. The problem is that different versions of the product are assembled on the same line. With the immediate reaction from the 5G system, faults are easily detected and corrected.

In its media release, ABB underlined that longstanding cross-industry networking tradition in Finland made the innovation possible. "The joint project has grown on the basis of the cooperative ecosystem of the Finnish manufacturing industries and the mobile communications industry."

Finnish software engineering firm Atostek is responsible for the computer vision and the AI application, and Nordic mobile phone operator Telia is providing the system's high-speed 5G mobile connections and the computing capacity needed by the application in its data.

Saynevirta said Finland is an excellent location for innovative work in digitisation due to the progressive approach in regulations. He described Finland as "an innovative environment that makes possible to bring together small and large companies with their expertise".

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