CENIC, ESnet peer at 100 Gbps

May 1, 2013
The Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC) and the Department of Energy’s (DoE’s) Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) have linked their respective fiber-optic networks at the Sunnyvale backbone node of CENIC’s California Research and Education Network (CalREN). The link will support data rates of 100 Gbps.

The Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC) and the Department of Energy’s (DoE’s) Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) have linked their respective fiber-optic networks at the Sunnyvale backbone node of CENIC’s California Research and Education Network (CalREN). The link will support data rates of 100 Gbps.

The link will enable collaboration between the two organizations, enabling high-speed use of each other’s resources. For example, the collaboration will enable the use of the Edison and Hopper supercomputers at the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) and the Gordon system at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) – served by ESnet and CENIC’s CalREN, respectively – to for study of climate change or cleaner energy, the organizations say.

Established in 1986, ESnet connects more than 40 DoE research sites. It also links DoE-supported researchers at national labs and universities with other research and education facilities worldwide. ESnet first deployed 100-Gbps technology in 2011 (see “Internet2, ESnet take 100-Gbps coast to coast”) and has continued deployments as necessary since then (see “ESnet deploys 100GbE on LIMAN via Infinera DTN systems”).

CalREN, meanwhile, focuses on the communications requirements of California’s K-20 research and education communities. The 3,800-mile fiber cable backbone serves institutions in all 58 of the state’s counties, who can connect via leased circuits obtained from telecom carriers or via CENIC-owned fiber-optic cable. Like ESnet, CENIC has partnered with Internet2 on 100 Gbps (see "R&E networks collaborate on 100G deployment").

“This connection is a fantastic opportunity to increase the number of collaborations between California campuses and national labs,” said ESnet Director Greg Bell. “We measure the impact of our network by the resulting scientific productivity of our users, and we fully expect this peering arrangement to pay significant research dividends. As a result of this high-speed peering, things that were previously impossible – like moving huge genomic data sets from one campus to another – are now possible.”

“Both ESnet and CalREN have seen enormous growth in recent network traffic, and all projections of traffic promise greatly increased growth in the not too distant future,” said Louis Fox, President and CEO of CENIC. “Connections like this between these two networks will enable both to better facilitate national and global collaboration, and to continue doing so in the coming decades as the innovations empowered by them create ever greater demands for bandwidth.”

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