Two new R&E network deployments for Ciena

Ciena’s momentum in the Research & Education (R&E) community took another big step forward today with the announcements of two new Ciena solution deployments to support advanced R&E network applications.  Because they support the needs of scientists and researchers to connect super computers, remote research locations and enable huge data transfers, R&E networks are usually at the cutting edge of technology – as is the case with today’s two announcements. 

The first is in the Netherlands, where SURFnet will use Ciena’s Carrier Ethernet products to create a dynamic Ethernet layer across their national infrastructure.  The second is in the U.S., where Berkeley Lab and Internet2 are teaming on a project to build a new 100G network for the Department of Energy using Ciena’s 100G technology.

In the Netherlands, SURFnet runs the country’s national R&E network that supports over one million education and research users.  Just two months ago we announced that SURFnet was deploying Ciena 100G technology on international links connecting the Netherlands to research communities like CERN in Switzerland.  Today, SURFnet is again using Ciena gear – this time as part of its GigaPort3 project aimed at creating a new dynamic Ethernet layer across the SURFnet network (see the press release here). 

SURFnet will use Ciena’s 5410 Service Aggregation Switch, which will provide packet/Ethernet traffic aggregation that scales to 1Tbps switching capacity, as well as 3940 and 3960 Service Delivery Switches – with the planned upgrade of approximately 300 sites during 2012.  In addition, SURFnet will use Ciena’s recently unveiled OneControl Unified Management System to enable visibility and management of both the Optical and Ethernet layers of the network on a single system.

Combined, the new Ethernet network and management system will allow SURFnet to easily create and deliver tailored Ethernet services for its network users, and provides the foundation for more widespread use of cloud networking within the R&E community.

In the U.S., Berkeley Lab and its Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) team are joining efforts with Internet2 on a project to build a prototype 100G network that connects supercomputing centers owned by the Department of Energy (DOE).  Called the Advanced Networking Initiative (ANI), the project is made possible by a $62M government grant.

As the first phase of this project, Internet2 is providing 4.4Tbps of capacity from its 100G network to connect three DOE supercomputing centers in Berkeley CA, Tennessee, and Illinois.  These mammoth connections are made possible using Ciena’s 6500 packet-optical platform, which forms the basis of the Internet2 100G network now being built.


Steve Cotter announces the ESnet ANI network award at the Internet2 Joint Techs meeting in Fairbanks Alaska

The three centers connected as part of this project are the prelude to a nationwide 100G production network that will connect DOE scientists, with a more far reaching goal of achieving a 1Tbps wavelength network.

“Research network traffic is growing at twice the rate of commercial Internet traffic, and the trend is expected to accelerate as the scope of scientific collaborations increases and scientists around the world draw data from geographically dispersed experimental facilities like the Large Hadron Collider,” said Dave Lambert, Internet2 president and CEO, in today’s press release.

These two new projects extend a long list of Ciena deployments in the R&E community.  Just this year, Ciena has announced: a new 100G network with Internet2 (link), a 40G deployment with VERNet (link), SURFnet’s 100G network (link), and a 100G trial with Renater (link).  But Ciena’s work with the R&E community extends beyond just selling products to another customer segment.  Ciena is an active participant in the R&E research community, and uses high performance research networks as a test-bed in the development of next generation technologies and architectures.

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