Title: Hands on Industrial IoT: Mastering the Mini-Factory
Short Code: MS_IoT_Minifactory
ECTS Credits: 3
Organizer Details: SUPSI Campus Est, Viganello, Ticino (CH)

Written individual report + Team presentation

Decision Date: 10 April 2024 
Start Date: 8 July 2024 
End Date: 12 July 2024 
Date Details:

Registration at SUPSI Campus Est, Viganello, Ticino (CH) between 8:00 and 8:30


Summer school, 5 full days program including a visit at MADE lab at Polytechnic University of Milan, Italy.



Description (max. 300 characters):

The summer school proposes a one-week intensive lab experience, in a state-of-the-art i4.0 automated production environment. Students will be offered a unique hands-on insight on the most modern manufacturing automation technologies, plant supervision and simulation techniques. The learning experience ranges from machine-level understanding of brushless motor control, to PLC programming with insights on classical IEC 61131-3 and with the latest event based IEC 61499 dedicated to IIoT based automated systems, smart sensor integration and data monitoring techniques. The experience is further enriched by a full-day visit to a well-known smart automation academic/industrial competence center at European level: MADE lab at Polytechnic University of Milan, Italy. The programme assessment is based on the evaluation of an individual report on the performed lab activities combined with a final pitch on an assigned project presented by teams of students in the last day of the summer school.

Contents and Learning Objectives:

Students will learn to handle interconnected sensors, control systems, machines, and robots, networked with the manufacturing management system, linking the industrial assets with business processes. All the lectures are accompanied with extensive hands-on lab experience. The lab is called "SUPSI MiniFactory" which is state-of-the-art IIOT facility, used to manufacture and assemble varied products (additive manufacturing, injection molding, laser texturing, assembly, robotic manipulation, Automated Guided Vehicles logistics, etc operations are involved including a human-robot collaboration assembly station).

In particular the activities in the MiniFactory will focus on:

Hands on IIoTT: what is Industrial Internet of Things within Industry 4.0 framework, smart sensors and the value of information and data in a manufacturing shop floor. The lab activities following IIoT lectures are focused on monitoring the smart sensors deployed across the SUPSI MiniFactory. The class will start from the communication protocols, through the acquisition and digitization phase, thus ending with the presentation layer able to monitor the factory and defining KPIs. Meanwhile, the practical part will be focused on developing a monitoring application able to fetch information from an MQTT broker and publish them to a data monitoring platform.

Distributed control system implementation:  what is a PLC, basics of PLC programming, factory task scheduling, real world exercise in the MiniFactory laboratory . The lectures and lab activities will encompass the comprehension of the differences between IEC 61131-3 and  IEC61499 architectures comprehending it from a real implementation; the experience will start with classic PLC programming with IEC61131-3, based on continuous cycle scan, and then moving to IEC61499, which is an event based architecture for distributed automation, so that its potential towards IIoT based automation system can be understood and hands-on experienced.

Brushless motors: what is a brushless motor, advantages and typical usage, basics of brushless motor control, real world exercise in the MiniFactory laboratory with dedicated test benches.

Admission: Industrial/Management Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or IT Engineering/Computer Science.

  • Implementation of a learning factory for research, education and training: the SUPSI Mini-Factory F Daniele, M Confalonieri, P Pedrazzoli, A Graf, A Ferrario, M Foletti Available at SSRN 3858404
  • A Multipurpose Small-Scale Smart Factory For Educational And Research Activities A Ferrario, M Confalonieri, A Barni, G Izzo, G Landolfi, P Pedrazzoli Procedia Manufacturing 38, 663-670
  • Design, development and applications of a learning factory at the university of applied sciences and arts of southern Switzerland A Ferrario Università degli studi di Parma. Dipartimento di Ingegneria e architettura


12h lecture; 20h lab; 8h company (MADE lab) tutored visit; 2.5h tutored repetition and certification preparation; 2.5h group project presentation


Lunches at campus and bus travel to Milan are INCLUDED for all students, hotel accommodation in double rooms and breakfast is included for students from other UASs only (not from SUPSI). All the rest it is up to the students.

For enrollment, please use the following link:


A contribution of CHF 100.- is requested to partially cover extra costs and organizational expenses related to the module. This amount applies only in case of no show.



  • Dr. Matteo Confalonieri - matteo.confalonieri@supsi.ch T: +41 58 666 66 92
  • Prof. Paolo Pedrazzoli - paolo.pedrazzoli@supsi.ch T: +41 58 666 66 38
  • For organizational aspects: dti@supsi.ch
Contact Person E-Mail: matteo.confalonieri@supsi.ch; dti@supsi.ch
Status: will be held
Specialization: Business Engineering (BE)

Computer Science (CS)

Mechanical Engineering (ME)

Mechatronics & Automation (MA)


[Responsible for this text: Confalonieri Matteo]