You are currently viewing Transformative Opportunities for European Defence with 5G Technology

Transformative Opportunities for European Defence with 5G Technology

  • Post author:
  • Post category:News

Fifth-generation wireless technology, or 5G, is becoming increasingly popular among different sectors and industries. This new technology could also be a useful instrument for the European defence sector. It will provide next-generation connectivity and more unified network management to armed forces around the globe.

In an interview with DefenseNews, Cyril Dujardin, senior vice president and global head of digital security at Atos, gives some insight into the prospects of 5G for the European defence industry. He argues that 5G improves 4G in terms of performance and its ability to cover the entire frequency spectrum through one single and unified technology.

There are several interesting opportunities with 5G for the defence sector. Firstly, 5G can improve the convergence of radio access (the link between the user devices and the base station) and the backhauling (the link between the base station and the core network). Secondly, 5G provides multi-hop configurations, therefore user devices can serve as a relay for other user devices. Thirdly, 5G enables better execution of proximity networking technologies, such as device-to-device transference and vehicle-to-everything transference. Such improvements could be highly beneficial in collaborative combat. Fourthly, 5G makes Multiple-Input/Multiple-Output technologies possible. These technologies enable, for example, beam-steering in the desired direction of transmission for better discretion. Lastly, 5G enables optimised execution of the Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC) concept, permitting local applications to interact with the network. This provides numerous possibilities for the global optimisation of troops and the decrease of network latency.

To unlock these possibilities for defence, there are still some roadblocks that need to be overcome. 5G technology was originally designed for the civilian domain; therefore, it needs to be adapted to the military world. In particular, it needs to resist physical, electromagnetic and cyber attacks. This adaptation process requires a strategy and substantial investments and depends upon technological building blocks.

In recent years, several countries and organisations have focused on the importance of emerging and disruptive technologies, like 5G. Dujardin notes that there is a European dimension emerging, as it is becoming more difficult for European countries to manufacture their national defence structures without a European system. To aid this development, collaborative models are being designed. The European Defence Fund has received considerable resources and funds. Although not yet sufficient, these funds provide the possibility of creating a strong European defence system.

By seizing this technology, the European defence sector can be transformed in the next five years. It offers the military a chance to create entirely new use cases and profit from a digital transformation that originated in the civil domain. Now is the time for the defence sector to reshape its communication systems and modify the layout of its information systems.

Written by Berber Bijlsma


Machi, Vivienne. (2022), ‘Atos’ Cyril Dujardin on European defense opportunities in 5G tech’, DefenseNews. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 15 February 2022].