The world's first 5G connected sea buoy boosting internet access on the Jurassic Coast will play a critical role in keeping people safe while out on the water, a Government minister has said.

Digital infrastructure minister Matt Warman was invited to the launch of the buoy at Lulworth Cove, part of a system designed to provide real-time information on sea conditions, which will be able to be accessed by the Coastguard and the RNLI.

Thought to be the first self-powered, floating 5G buoy of its kind in the world, it provides sea-state safety monitoring as part of 5G RuralDorset’s research project funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

It has been provided by JET Engineering System Solutions.

JET’s CEO and founder James Thomas accompanied Mr Warman out to sea to inspect the Surf Condition Monitoring System (SCMS) buoy and discuss how this - the first of many connected buoys - will provide high-data connectivity along the coastline of the UK.

It will allow improvements in many areas of the growing 'blue economy', including:

* Smarter management of aquaculture farming

* Autonomous and un-crewed marine platform operations to support offshore renewable fixed and floating sites

* Improved above-and-below-water defence and security monitoring of assets and borders

Mr Warman said: "5G-powered buoys could play a critical role in keeping people safe while out at sea, and are yet another example of how government-backed trials led by the country's most talented innovators are carving out novel solutions to age-old problems using the latest mobile technology."