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Private wireless means there’s gold for Nokia in them there hills

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América Móvil’s Claro Chile is working with Nokia to deploy a private almost-5G wireless network at a Chilean gold mine.

The project will transform Salares Norte into one of most digitalised mines in Latin America, using what Nokia calls its private LTE/4.9G network technology.

Francisco Guzmán, director of Claro Empresas, said: “By deploying ultra-reliable, high-performance, low-latency networks, we’ll be able to deliver the best tools and connectivity to support the development of mining 4.0, which is focused on digitising its operations, and what better than doing this with a partner like Nokia, that has world-class expertise and knowledge.”

The project will help make mining safer, more efficient and productive, said Nokia.

Fernando Sosa, head of Nokia’s Southern Cone market unit, said: “Automation relies on the ability to sense, analyse and act. To do so, industries are connecting every sensor, machine and worker in the most flexible way — and for that they need business and mission-critical wireless networking solutions such as private LTE/4.9G.”

In total, the network will connect 150 sensors for operational processes, monitoring and accident prevention in addition to 72 connected vehicles and machines. Nokia and Claro will also provide professional services such as network design, testing and deployment. With this infrastructure, the network will enable critical voice, data, internet and video communications to improve employee safety, as well as operational efficiency and productivity.

Sosa said: “By working with Claro Chile to create such an automated ecosystem for Gold Fields, we are opening new opportunities for enterprises and other asset-intensive industries, such as energy and rail, throughout Chile.”

Nokia pointed out that mining operations require highly-reliable networks that can cover large outdoor sites or deep underground tunnels. “Industrial-grade private wireless solutions offer robust, secure and predictable wireless coverage,” said the company.