VITAL-5G Platform and Assets

Athens Warehouse Available Assets

In the DIAKINISIS warehouse trial site, we deploy and demonstrate the “Automation & remote operation of freight logistics (Warehouse logistics)” use case, which leverages on 5G Standalone (SA) connectivity and network slicing principles to demonstrate the optimization of warehousing operations through an integrated state-of-the-art operational system based on Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) (VS1). The current deployment re-uses part of the 5G-EVE Athens testbed which has been upgraded Rel. 16 SA and extended at the warehouse premises. In detail, a new 5G Rel. 16 Core and a new virtualized infrastructure has been installed, interconnecting the DIA warehouse with the 5G Core through a fiber-optic cable.
This use case also supports the automated and remotely assisted operation of AGVs, using HD video streaming functionality to enable human interaction (VS2), while additional AI/ML techniques have been introduced for the post-processing of operational data in order to improve the end-to-end functionality of the warehouse ecosystem (VA1). A visual representation of the use case is depicted in Figure below. The concept of Network Applications defined in the scope of VITAL-5G project has been used to design and develop these vertical services that support the use case.

In this case, three different Network Applications instantiate the three services as shown in Figure below. A different combination of the Network Applications is required for the realization of each service.

The same trial site can be leveraged by the external experimenters, i.e., the 3rd party experimenters, which can be either involved in the use case Automation & remote operation of freight logistics (Warehouse logistics) to enhance it and experiment with the existing vertical services, or create their own use cases by reusing the network infrastructure (radio, edge, and core), Network Applications, and other tools such as local monitoring platform and slice plugins.

Below, we provide further details on the 5G system components within the Athens trial site, as well as the Network Applications that can be reused by the 3rd party experimenters.

Concerning the Athens 5G-Testbed, as a core of the Athens trial site, it spans the usual 5G SA ecosystem components (as shown in Figure 13):
• User Equipment, i.e., an AGV, a dedicated sensor Gateway with attached environmental sensors and video camera.
• Radio Access Network (RAN) with a dedicated gNodeB with two cells installed in a selected area of the DIA warehouse.
• Transport and Core network.

• A Cloud compute resource server that hosts the Network Application platform, designed and deployed to provide Network Function Virtualization (NFVI) resources for hosting and orchestrating Network Applications tailored to Assisted Vessel Transport use case, by using Open-Source MANO (OSM)-based orchestrator and Openstack/Kubernetes.
• A testing room with a gNodeB (not shown in the picture), with similar configuration and located in the OTE premises. The partner/experimenter can choose to conduct preliminary experiments/tests in this facility before moving to the DIA warehouse.


Available assets from Athens trial site

In terms of Network Applications, the “Distributed sensor data ingestion fusion & automation” (VA1) will be provided for experimentation. For example, this will enable 3rd party experimenters to create and configure a vertical agnostic and data ingestion and post-processing Network Application. This Network Application can serve as a basis for 3rd party experimenters to build their own applications by combining it with a service of their own. This can be realized mainly via REST-based interfaces.

In case 3rd party experimenters are not aiming to build new vertical services and Network Applications, but to rather leverage on VITAL-5G trial sites to collect realistic data for validating their theoretical or simulation-based models, we offer several data types, which can be further extended depending on the needs and requirements from the 3rd-party experimenters. At the moment, the data types available in the Greek testbed are:
• Data from mounted sensors in the warehouse, mainly coming from the telemetry station (temperature, humidity, etc.) and the camera.
• Non-sensitive data coming from the warehouse and AGV operations (e.g., velocity, location, direction etc.)
• Network data collected from radio and core functions, including the network performance.
Furthermore, for the Greek node specifically, WINGS will make available a message broker, a warehouse simulator, namely a Digital Twin and a simulated warehouse environment which includes virtual AGVs, and a Fleet simulator. This way 3rd party experimenters will be able to build applications on top of the 24/7 available simulated data, avoiding the need to integrate with specific equipment (e.g., AGVs). The simulators will be deployed in a field device in DIA warehouse and will communicate over the 5G network, therefore, experimenters will be able to evaluate their application over a realistic 5G deployment.

The role of the 3rd party experimenters in the Greek trial site depends on the background knowledge and expertise of the onboarded parties. Thus, we adjust the role based on that, and tune the support depending on whether the 3rd party belongs to T&L industry (SMEs and start-ups), or research and academia domains (research institutes, universities).

AssetType of assetAvailability (from)Description
Distributed sensor data ingestion fusion & automation (VA1)NetAppSeptember 2022Responsible for the data ingestion and two-way communication with on-site equipment, decision support using rules and inference, monitoring and field assistance.
Digital Twin & simulated warehouse environment which includes virtual Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs)Facility2023Experiment execution using the digital twin and simulated warehouse environment with virtual AGVs.
Partial access to AGVsFacility2023Agreed and coordinated access to the AGVs (indoor robotic platform) in the Athens trial facility will be possible.
Data from mounted sensors in the warehouseData2023The Environmental Sensors pack provides data from sensors (temperature, humidity, vibration, luminosity) deployed on various locations in the warehouse environment. The data will be available in the form of open datasets.
Non-sensitive historical data from warehouse and AGV operationsData2023Open datasets with non-sensitive historical data from warehouse and AGV operations to be available on Zenodo.
Pre-configured 5G slices5G testbed20235G slices provisioned during the third-party experimenters’ trials. Different network slices (eMBB and uRLLC) to be provisioned in a pre-configured manner.
New 5G slices to be provisioned5G testbed20235G slices provisioned during the third-party experimenters’ trials. Different network slices (eMBB and uRLCC) to be provisioned in a dynamic manner.
Network KPIs from monitoring platform on 5G testbedResults2023Measurement logs on network KPIs from executed experiments provided through the Vital-5G monitoring platform.