INWIT and Philip Morris join forces to develop Industry 4.0

Philip Morris Manufacturing & Technology Bologna

A DAS created in the innovative plant in Valsamoggia (Bo) will allow the optimal use of all wireless connected devices and the development of IOT services.

A DAS created in the innovative plant in Valsamoggia (Bo) will allow the optimal use of all wireless connected devices and the development of IOT services

INWIT has signed an agreement with Philip Morris Manufacturing & Technology Bologna to create an indoor coverage system using DAS (Distributed Antenna System) technology at the group’s new plant in Valsamoggia, in the province of Bologna.

The multinational’s new plant covers around 110,000 square metres and is a global trailblazer in the large-scale production of innovative combustion-free products, based on electronic heating.

The plant is the result of an investment of over 1 billion euros. Since 2014 around 1200 people have been hired to work there and it is now the largest Italian factory built from scratch in the last 20 years. The plant satisfies the international demand of over 38 countries and is positioned as the lead site out of the Philip Morris International plants in the world. Philip Morris Manufacturing & Technology Bologna is in fact where industrial processes for the creation of high-tech products are defined. The know-how is then transferred to the other production affiliates of the Philip Morris International group.

The coverage system that INWIT will create in the Valsamoggia plant involvesthe installation of microantennas built by JMA Wireless, which will be connected to each other and powered by a signal that reaches the plant via optical fibre, making the signal of all mobile operators stable and fast and allowing the optimal use of all devices, from smartphones to tablets and PCs with a wireless connection.  The DAS will immediately improve the current technologies up to 4G, and it will be set up to handle the main technological developments being rolled out throughout Italy.  The micro-coverage infrastructure will give great impetus to the implementation of Industry 4.0, which will be essential for the economic recovery of Italy.

Our goal of building a smoke-free future, replacing cigarettes with innovative combustion-free products, sees digitisation as one of its fundamental cornerstones,” commented Oleksiy Lomeyko, Director Operations at Philip Morris Manufacturing & Technology Bologna. “The digital transformation actually involves the whole of our business, from product to processes, and finds in our production plant in the Bologna area one of the maximum expressions of Industry 4.0 at a global level. We are proud of this agreement as it will mean we can continue to push and accelerate using the lever of innovation: a strategic asset not just for our organisation but for our entire Italian supply chain, which together with us plays a leading role in the transformation of our sector.

This agreement signed by INWIT with an international partner devoted to innovation like Philip Morris,” pointed out the CEO, Giovanni Ferigo “represents a new step in our company’s undertaking to raise awareness among national businesses and social enterprises on the need to equip themselves with mobile micro-coverage to fully exploit the development opportunities available with new mobile connections. We have done this, with excellent results, in hospitals, museums, large railway stations and sports facilities, as well as with business enterprises such as shopping centres and large office buildings. Now the agreement with Philip Morris will allow us to address the Industry 4.0 sector where the development of new services and applications linked to the Internet of Things will represent a great opportunity for growth and efficiency.”