Over the past year, national research and education networks (NRENs) around the world have been upgraded their networks to 100-Gbps transmission speeds. But collaborative work has been hampered by the lack of high-speed connections between individual networks. Now a group of six networks has joined forces to set up an intercontinental 100-Gbps connection.
During the TERENA Conference on 3—6 June, there were demonstrations of the intercontinental 100 Gbps link, showing that data transfers between Maastricht in the Netherlands, and Chicago, Illinois took just a few minutes rather than many hours over the public Internet.
The six organizations participating in the project are Internet2, NORDUnet, ESnet, SURFnet, CANARIE, and GÉANT. The partners had set up what they call the Advanced North Atlantic 100G Pilot project (ANA-100G) earlier this year. The project will be used for engineering intercontinental 100G optical transmissions as well as testing out applications, resources, monitoring techniques and advanced technologies such as software-defined networking.
Testing will take place between four open exchange points, including MAN LAN in New York City and NetherLight in Amsterdam for at least 12 months following the TERENA Conference.
Ciena provided photonic equipment for the ANA-100G pilot, which included the recently released subsea version of 100G WaveLogic 3. Juniper also loaned some of its routing equipment for the demonstrations.
“As research and education collaboration becomes ever more global, and transatlantic data grows exponentially, it is not sustainable operationally to continue at multiple 10-Gbps connections,” added Matthew Scott and Niels Hersoug, joint general managers of DANTE, which operates the GÉANT network. “Therefore on behalf of our NREN partners and their users we welcome this milestone achievement, and look forward to further collaboration between research and education networks to deliver economies of scale and seamless global connectivity.”
By Pauline Rigby