R&E networks demonstrate 100-Gbps transatlantic connections at TERENA Networking Conference

Internet2, NORDUnet, ESnet, SURFnet, CANARIE, and GÉANT – six of the leading research and education (R&E) networks in the world – have joined with Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) and Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR) to demonstrate a 100-Gbps connection between Europe and North America. The demonstration, which began this month at the TERENA Networking Conference 2013 (TNC2013) June 3-6 in Maastricht, The Netherlands, points the way toward further collaboration and high-speed connectivity among R&E networks on the two continents.

Jun 27th, 2013

Internet2, NORDUnet, ESnet, SURFnet, CANARIE, and GÉANT – six of the leading research and education (R&E) networks in the world – have joined with Ciena Corp. (NASDAQ: CIEN) and Juniper Networks (NYSE: JNPR) to demonstrate a 100-Gbps connection between Europe and North America. The 100G demonstration, which began this month at the TERENA Networking Conference 2013 (TNC2013) June 3-6 in Maastricht, The Netherlands, points the way toward further collaboration and high-speed connectivity among R&E networks on the two continents.

The demonstration is part of the Advanced North Atlantic 100G Pilot project (ANA-100G), an effort unveiled this past April at the 2013 Internet2 Annual Meeting. With many R&E networks upgrading to 100 Gbps, collaboration among the researchers using these networks has been hampered by a lack of 100-Gbps transatlantic fiber-optic network connectivity. The project aims to investigate advanced networking capabilities, such as software-defined networks (SDNs), to help determine operational requirements for such intercontinental R&E network connections, as well as promote the provision of intercontinental 100G capabilities.

The demonstration link, which is scheduled to run for the next year, will support 100-Gbps connections among as many as four open exchange points, with MAN LAN in New York City and NetherLight in Amsterdam the first two exchanges selected.

During the TERENA conference, ANA-100G demonstrations included large file transfers between Maastricht and Chicago using the public Internet as well as “First European ExoGENI at Work,” which saw the University of Amsterdam collaborate with the Renaissance Computing Institute in North Carolina. ExoGENI is a networking and cloud computing testbed program funded through the National Science Foundation’s Global Environment for Network Innovation (GENI). The program adds open cloud computing (via OpenStack) and dynamic circuit fabrics to the GENI virtual laboratory program.

Another demonstration attempted to determine the number of R&E servers necessary to fill the 100-Gbps link. The answer: Two hosts on each continent can generate almost 80 Gbps of traffic with the proper tuning.

The ANA-100G project members purchased a 100-Gbps wavelength from an unidentified transatlantic carrier for the demonstration. Ciena’s 100G coherent transmission technology is supplying the subsea optical transport horsepower, while Juniper Networks equipment helped enable some of the TERENA demonstrations.

“This achievement shows that research and education networks are at the forefront of innovation, thereby empowering the most advanced research by universities and research institutions worldwide,” said Erwin Bleumink, CEO of SURFnet, the local organizer of TNC2013, via a press release. “The impact of this development, however, will also be seen outside academia and help stimulate the global economy.”

“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.”

For more information on high-speed transmission systems and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.

More in High-Speed Networks
High-Speed Networks
TIM, Nokia transmit 550 Gbps over 350 km