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3 important benefits of a private 4G LTE

Right now, 4G LTE private wireless networks for offshore wind farms are starting to gain traction; you might have noticed that some of the major wind farms have already adopted this technology?
 
But why is the demand for private wireless networks increasing? And should you also start preparing for the future and adopt this technology?
 
In short, 4G LTE provides similar reach and a higher bandwidth compared to TETRA, while being cheaper than satellite. Specifically, the data throughput of TETRA is in kilobits, while private wireless network can throughput megabits. This means that you will be able to use more data-intensive tools and applications to optimize your work.
 
Here are three ways that the increased data transfer capacity provided by a 4G LTE solution will benefit the operations of your wind farm.
 
1. Smarter operation and maintenance through digitisation
Taking advantage of advancements in digitisation such as Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and Big Data can help optimize and ensure longevity of your assets.
 
Turbine fails are very expensive. In 2019 research by Wood Mackenzie, Daniel Liu, Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables Principal Analyst, said that unplanned failures can cost the asset owner as much as $30,000 per turbine per year in terms of repairs and spare parts and up to 7 days’ worth of lost production per year. This is not including production losses caused by pre-emptive shutdowns or long delivery times for materials, equipment and technicians to the affected turbine.
 
This can be solved by deploying IIoT sensor technology that collects a variety of operational data such as vibration, temperature and humidity.
 
On the back of a private wireless network supporting the data transfer requirements, you will be able to obtain valuable real-time information about the condition of the asset and make preemptive decisions for the continued safe operation of the site.
 
 
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2. Reliable data and communications network
Reliability is key in the offshore industry, and your assets should ideally run 24/7/365. Therefore, having a stable, continuous, and reliable connection means that your team can perform their tasks without being hindered by loss of connectivity.
 
But even before the operation phase, you will be able to utilize the increased data capacity to provide data and video capabilities alongside clear voice communications.
 
By having a private wireless network installed, workers can communicate with co-workers, helicopters, and support vessels via multiple methods right from the beginning of the construction phase. Aside from voice, they can now conduct push-to-video for remote support, and even send large-sized files such as drawings using the network. Your reliable 4G / LTE network solution, will help you enhance the safety and productivity of the site.
 
3. Crew welfare
As wind farms are built further offshore, the support vessels and crew remain offshore for longer periods of time too. Due to this, leisure becomes more important for the physical and mental wellbeing of your crew. 
 
Reliable communication access on board provides improved connectivity options such as video calls and streaming that help alleviate the isolation seafarers feel. This is a win-win situation; the increased data throughput from 4G LTE will improve the welfare of the crew while it supports your operational requirements.
 
Future-proofing your asset
As we move further into the age of digital transformation, our demand for data will only increase. By ensuring that your assets are future-proof with private wireless network, you will be able to implement technologies strengthen the infrastructure and keep your people safe.
 
Find out more!
If you would like to explore how a private wireless network would work for you and your offshore asset, please feel free to leave a message on our site or reach out to our telecommunication experts.
 
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