Ericsson to deploy offshore network for Ooredoo Qatar’s oil and gas customers

The network for Ooredoo is ‘5G-ready’ and the equipment used is ATEX 2 Zone certified, said Ericsson

Ericsson is deploying a 4G network to help Ooredoo Qatar’s oil and gas enterprise customers connect their offshore facilities with arriving ships. The network will feature RAN equipment designed to withstand “demanding and complex working conditions,” according to the companies.

Eighteen months ago, the Qatari mobile operator said it was working with Ericsson, as well as rival Nokia to deploy a “dedicated LTE network for the oil and gas industry,” describing it at the time as “a first for Qatar.” Last week, Ooredoo did indeed announce the launch of a private LTE network from Nokia that sounds remarkably similar to the Ericsson deployment, leaving some room for confusion about how exactly these deployments will go down. Are there are twin private network projects in play? Perhaps they will interconnect and serve different purpose?

Regardless, Ericsson and Ooredoo claim to have already deployed a proof of concept for the technology on one site and said further execution is in the works. The network is “5G-ready” and the equipment used is ATEX 2 Zone certified, which means its meets the requirements to operate in hazardous settings, claimed Ericsson.

“By designing an ATEX-certified enclosure to ensure that our equipment can withstand the challenging offshore environment, we look forward to supporting Ooredoo Qatar’s customers in the coming years during their digital transformation,” Kevin Murphy, vice president and head of Ericsson Levant Countries and Global Customer Unit Ooredoo Group at Ericsson Middle East and Africa, elaborated. “We are confident that our expertise and collaboration with Ooredoo Qatar, which has seen massive RAN and infrastructure upgrades in recent years, will deliver the high-quality connectivity that its oil and gas enterprise customers require.”

Ooredoo Qatar Chief Business Officer Thani Al Malki stated that the partnership with Ericsson will enable the company to leverage its “extensive network infrastructure” and provide its oil and gas enterprise customers with “a cutting-edge offshore 4G network.”

This summer, Ericsson and Ooredoo Qatar signed a five-year extension of their existing 5G deal to increase collaboration on RAN products and services. Under the renewed contract, Ericsson will provide 5G RAN solutions and services and continue supplying indoor small cell solutions.

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