The Department of Defense announced $600 million in awards Thrusday for 5G experimentation and testing and five U.S. military test sites, including Naval Base San Diego.
The DOD says the projects represent the largest full-scale 5G tests for dual-use applications in the world, with officials from the military, technology industry, and academic experts collaborating to advance DOD's 5G capabilities.
The San Diego portion of the testing involves a project to develop a 5G-enabled smart warehouse that improves materiel and supply handling, management, storage and distribution for the Navy's Fleet Logistics Center in San Diego and creates a proving ground for testing, refining and validating emerging 5G enabled technologies.
A Naval Base Coronado warehouse operated by the Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center will be used to prototype a smart warehouse use case and perform at-scale experimentation.
AT&T, GE Research, Vectrus Mission Solutions Corp. and Deloitte Consulting LLP will take part in designing and building the 5G test bed, network enhancements and warehouse specific applications, according to the DOD.
Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific will lead the technical assessment and support the implementation and execution of the experiments, performing tests and evaluation, and ensuring the deployed 5G technology and smart warehouse applications meet the expectations of the Navy and the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering.
Michael Kratsios, Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, said, "The Department of Defense is at the forefront of cutting-edge 5G testing and experimentation, which will strengthen our nation's warfighting capabilities as well as U.S. economic competitiveness in this critical field. Through these test sites, the department is leveraging its unique authorities to pursue bold innovation at a scale and scope unmatched anywhere else in the world. Importantly, today's announcement demonstrates the department's commitment to exploring the vast potential applications and dual-use opportunities that can be built upon next-generation networks."
Other test sites announced Thursday include Hill Air Force Base in Utah, Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington, Marine Corps Logistics Base in Albany, Georgia and Nellis Air Force Base in Las Vegas, Nevada.