Nestled in the heel of Italy’s ‘boot’ is Apulia, also known by its Italian name, Puglia, and it is home to the Nardò Technical Center. One of the most important and renowned Proving Grounds in the world, Nardò Technical Center is a premium provider of high-performance testing and engineering services dedicated to the entire automotive industry.
Owned by Porsche and operated by Porsche Engineering, it’s now offering customers Europe’s first 5G hybrid mobile private network (MPN) which promises reduced delays, wider bandwidth, improved security and reliability, and faster deployment time.
What is a mobile private network?
An MPN is a mini-mobile network built to cover a specific location, delivering secure connectivity and powerful computing in real-time, even in places that were previously hard to connect.
Running on either 4G or 5G, it serves as an alternative to Wi-Fi but differs from a public mobile network by providing private reserved coverage.
Enabling innovative applications, MPN supports a wave of business-critical services that demand secure and reliable connectivity such as robotics, autonomous guided vehicles (AGVs), augmented reality, connected workers and more.
A hybrid infrastructure
At Nardò, the new mobile network infrastructure enables 4G and 5G coverage throughout the testing center, which includes over 700 hectares and more than 20 tracks for high-performance testing.
With 5G, customers can now develop and validate a wide range of future applications, from vehicle-to-infrastructure, vehicle-to-vehicle and highly automated driving functions to self-driving vehicles.
This is because 5G can handle a huge number of devices, thanks to increased bandwidth capabilities. It’s reduced latency also means that data transfer is almost instant – a must when remote-controlling heavy machinery or for when autonomous vehicles are on the roads.
As a next generation MPN, the system features a hybrid infrastructure, using a private network fully integrated into Vodafone’s public mobile network.
Thanks to this innovative design, local people benefit from fast 5G public network, while Nardò’s customers can make use of a private network that guarantees high standards in data security.
The future of mobility
Evolving its working practices, the new network marks another important chapter in the future-oriented development of the testing center.
Since 2012 Porsche has invested in the modernisation and technological upgrade of the Proving Ground. From its workshops and safety systems to the famous 12.6 kilometres circular track being completely renovated in 2019.
Laying the groundwork for future technologies and innovation, the new 5G MPN resembles a smart city, with coverage on and off campus that can support the next generation of applications that will transform transportation and mobility.
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