British multinational telecommunications company Vodafone has announced that it will offer its 5G (fifth generation) mobile private network (MPN) to fast-track the development and testing of autonomous vehicles at HORIBA MIRA’s Nuneaton headquarters in the Midlands.

HORIBA MIRA is an automotive engineering and development firm.

The British telecom company explained that its 5G MPN, which offers ultra-fast speeds and low latency, will help in the development of driverless vehicles at the site.

Vodafone UK business director Anne Sheehan said: “Our 5G technology makes self-driving vehicles on our roads not just a possibility, but a reality.

“This mobile private network will play a huge role in supporting HORIBA MIRA’s cutting edge work on the development and testing of driverless technologies.”

The 5G and 4G private network will enable HORIBA MIRA’s clients, including start-ups and established automakers to speed up the development of autonomous driving technologies such as vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication.

With the help of the V2V and V2I technologies, vehicles will be able to ‘talk’ to each other, respond to the traffic signals and centralised traffic management systems in real-time and react immediately to emergencies.

Vodafone UK noted that it is also deploying its 5G MPNs at other industrial sites across the country, including Centrica’s gas plant in Easington, Yorkshire, to Ford’s factory in Essex.

Last month, Vodafone announced that it will offer 5G connectivity for the Midlands Future Mobility consortium, which will test self-driving vehicles on important routes in the West Midlands region, UK.

The telecommunications company noted that over 300 miles of West Midlands’ roads will be part of this trial.

The trial of the connected vehicles on the roads is intended to make UK roads safer and facilitate predictable goods delivery and journey times.