Swedish Carrier Tests How 5G Drones Can Serve the Logging Industry


Swedish telecom Telia is harnessing the power of drones and 5G for logging. In a collaborative effort with Ericsson, Volvo, Mittuniversitetet (Mid Sweden University), Biometria, Skogforsk, and SCA, Telia successfully tested this innovative approach in a forest outside Stockholm in May. The project is co-funded by the Swedish government according to Telecoms.com.

During the test, a drone equipped with a portable 5G base station was used to control forestry equipment remotely. The drone provided coverage in a range of approximately 1.86 miles. The drone operator was nearly 50 miles from the test site during the experiment.  

“We can now establish that it is possible to connect and remotely control large vehicles via a drone, which in practice acts as a base station in the mobile network,” said Magnus Leonhardt, head of strategy and innovation at Telia Sweden’s B2B business. “This creates completely new and flexible opportunities to connect businesses that work in areas with insufficient network coverage.”  

Why test in the forestry and agricultural industries? About 75 percent of Sweden’s land mass is covered by forests, contributing to the country being the world’s largest exporter of pulp, paper, and sawn lumber. The industry also employs 120,000 people, reported Telecoms.com.

According to Petrus Jönsson, researcher and deputy program manager at Skogforsk, the consortium aims to improve the working environment across various industries. “In the next step, we want to test connecting and remotely controlling a soil preparation machine, which is a much heavier machine that operates in inaccessible terrain,” he said. 

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