UAE state-owned oil and gas company ADNOC unveiled a plan to build what it claims will be the energy industry’s largest private 5G network alongside operator e&, a facility set to span 11,000 square kilometres.

The energy company believes the network will generate $1.5 billion of value between completion in 2025 and 2030, driven by optimised production and autonomous operations. Its infrastructure is also expected to cut emissions and improve worker safety.  

ADNOC intends to extend use of AI applications to its most remote facilities both onshore and offshore using 5G. It forms part of an ambition to become the “world’s most AI-enabled energy company”.

Once complete the infrastructure will send information from sensors embedded into over 12,000 wells and pipelines to an autonomous control room. The company noted this would help “make real-time recommendations to increase the lifespan of these assets and ensure safety in the field”.

ADNOC MD and group CEO Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber, who is also UAE minister of industry and advanced technology, said: “Global demand is rising for both energy and AI, so by investing in cutting-edge connectivity across our operations, we can ensure that we continue providing secure, reliable and responsible energy to our customers.”

He added the partnership with e& was expected to “enable us to make faster, smarter decisions, from the control room to the boardroom, future-proof our business and keep our people and the environment safe”.