16th January 2020

The first 5G campus network in the Czech Republic to be rolled out in Ostrava

On 20 December 2019, the representatives of T-Mobile Czech Republic a.s. and VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava (VŠB-TUO) signed a memorandum to mark the start of their long-term cooperation in the rollout of the first campus network in the Czech Republic. The network will cover a part of the university campus and will be part of testbed platform which is focused on digitized production and demonstration of the Industry 4.0 principles. The testbed will provide opportunities for testing a wide range of the use of campus networks. By signing the Memorandum, both entities declare their interest to cooperate in the horizon of three to five years, during which the private campus network is expected to be extended with 5G technologies. The cooperation mainly involves the sharing of information, behaviour analyses of the campus network, implementation of scientific research as well as pilot commercial projects.

“We greatly appreciate this unique partnership with VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava. We are convinced that the start of our cooperation will soon bring results not only in the operation and performance of the private campus network, but also in the first concrete customer solutions in the area of production digitization,” says José Perdomo Lorenzo, CEO T-Mobile Czech Republic and Slovak Telekom, adding: "I believe that we can not only take full advantage but also develop the experience of our colleagues from the Deutsche Telekom Group, who are already testing several similar solutions."

The aim of the Rector of VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava is clear. Make the 40-hectare campus of the school the largest living laboratory in the Czech Republic. The digitalisation of the society will affect all our activities in the future. In the field of industry, this digitization is called Industry 4.0, in the field of e-health medicine and telemedicine. The effort to reduce the carbon footprint of our society will be strongly linked to the digitization of the energy sector. “We want to simulate an entire city, smart city, on our campus. Almost continuously, there are 10-15 thousand people in it and it is an exemplary opportunity to test the functioning of the digital society. The 5G network will be the backbone of this digitization, without which it would be almost unthinkable to want to build something like this. Another important element is the computing power needed to simulate and optimize each digitization step. We are able to ensure this through our supercomputer centre, which is one of the largest in Europe,” says prof. Václav Snášel. 

The campus network will be gradually expanding after it is launched. The partners envisage that they will be able to sign cooperation agreements with specific contracting entities and test real-life scenarios already next year. Ericsson, the technology supplier for Smart Factory project, will deploy its private networks solution that includes pre-packaged Enterprise Core and 5G-ready Ericsson Radio System products such as the industry-leading Radio Dot System. “We are delighted to partner in this first private campus network in Czech Republic.  The cooperation with T-Mobile Czech Republic and VŠB - Technical University of Ostrava - is a great opportunity for us to explore the industry requirements on future technologies.  As technology leaders, our Private Networks solutions are characterized by flexibility and reliability. Together with our partners we are setting the standards for Industry 4.0 and we are happy to see our joint vision resonating well in the Czech Republic market,” says Jenny Lindqvist, Head of Northern & Central Europe, Ericsson.

The tasks that lie ahead of both partners in the near future include the completion of the Smart Factory building and other parts, design of the communications infrastructure and deployment of the campus network in selected laboratory areas of the testbed. The private campus network is scheduled to be operational in the second quarter of 2020.

Smart Factory

VŠB-TUO is currently completing the construction of a building that is part of a testbed housing a Smart Factory - digital workplace with robotics components, autonomous transportation and utilization of Industry 4.0 elements. Another part of the testbed is for example a “Home Care” with flats equipped with ability to monitor its tenants’ needs, IoT components development and technologies from biomedical engineering, dedicated corridor for autonomous cars traffic or a 3D printing centre. Integral part of the infrastructure complex will be a private campus network to be deployed by T-Mobile. It is the future standard of communications technology that is critical for connecting robotic devices, IoT sensors, cameras, IT equipment, digital devices and other network elements of the manufacturing process.

Private Campus Network

Campus networks will allow companies to use a variety of modern digital communication technologies supporting LTE, 5G, IoT, for their business, manufacturing and operational purposes. The private campus is of key importance especially in connection with 5G network technology. The main advantages of 5G technology in conjunction with a private campus network are digitalization of not only manufacturing, but also in other areas such as logistics, trade or healthcare. Fifth generation networks are designed from the outset to be safe against eavesdropping and other risks of abuse. They operate in the licensed band, so they have clear rules that protect networks from interference. They are capable of handling very high-density terminal equipment.

Members of the American Chamber of Commerce in the Czech Republic