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ESnet and Internet2 Extend Networking Partnership

Posted on Jul 16, 2007 by Doug Howell
Tags: imported, Mitel/Level 3 SIP Services, Network Infrastructure, Network Partnerships, Research & Education Networks, Science & Engineering

Multi-Year Agreement to Provide Foundation for Next-Generation Network to Support Department of Energy Scientists

ANN ARBOR, Mich., and BERKELEY, Calif. - July 16, 2007 - The Department of Energy's (DOE) Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) and Internet2-two of the nation's leading networking organizations dedicated to research-today announced a multi-year extension to their agreement to deploy and operate the next generation of the ESnet backbone network.

Called ESnet4, the new network created through this partnership is being built as a highly reliable, high capacity nationwide network that will greatly enhance the capabilities of scientists at national laboratories and universities across the country. This long-term partnership, initially announced in August 2006, brings together two advanced networks which have a combined 30 years of experience in providing service to thousands of researchers around the world. The network will be managed by ESnet and operated across Internet2's backbone infrastructure.

Once complete, the ESnet4 network will utilize several dedicated 10-gigabit-per-second (Gbps) wavelengths on the new Internet2 nationwide infrastructure and will seamlessly scale by one optical wavelength per year for the next four to five years in order to meet the needs of the DOE Office of Science. The Office of Science oversees more than 30 DOE laboratories, 100,000 DOE laboratory scientists, 18,000 researchers from universities, other government agencies and private industry who contribute to many large scale DOE research activities like the experiments at the Large Hadron Collider project at CERN, the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider at Brookhaven National Lab, among many others.

"This continued investment in ESnet by the Department of Energy's Office of Science represents a significant contribution to the nation's research and education infrastructure. In fact, as the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, the Office of Science provides research funding for thousands of scientists at universities," said William Johnston, head of the ESnet Department at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. "By working with Internet2 to increase the reliability and capacity of ESnet, our goal is to advance scientific discovery through access to large-scale scientific resources and improved collaborations."

The agreement between ESnet and Internet2 stems from the conclusion that by sharing a common optical circuit infrastructure that is larger than either community could obtain individually, both DOE's and the U.S. research and education community's research would have access to a network infrastructure bigger than either community could build on their own. Another factor supporting the partnership is the fact that nearly 90 percent of the network traffic on ESnet flows to and from the research and education community.

ESnet and Internet2 announced in May 2007 that the organizations had completed the first northeast segments of the new network-an important deployment milestone. Deployment of the initial infrastructure continues on schedule, with the section east of the Rockies essentially complete. Completion is expected by October 2007. The new ESnet4 network is provided by Internet2 through its agreement with Level 3 Communications. Internet2 and Level 3 have deployed a dedicated, high capacity backbone with dynamic optical circuit provisioning for the Internet2 community. Internet2 and ESnet will operate the ESnet4 network to provide flexibility and control in the dynamic provisioning of optical circuits needed to support today's large-scale and highly complex scientific research.

"We are on the cusp of significant changes in the way scientific research is conducted. As university faculty and researchers shift from working in a local laboratory to leveraging major global collaborations, this change will have a direct and meaningful impact upon demand for high performance, reliable networks," said Douglas Van Houweling, Internet2 president and CEO. "We believe the important long-term partnership we have built with ESnet will provide the foundation to support this new paradigm and we are confident it will open the door to myriad new scientific discoveries and collaborations that have yet to be imagined."

Today, Internet2's network connects over five million users at 270 research and education institutions in the U.S. and also provides access to over 80 international research networks. This partnership will allow university and lab researchers participating in ESnet activities to leverage their institutions' Internet2 network connection to access the ESnet4 infrastructure and its global network partners around the world.

About ESnet

ESnet is a high-speed network serving thousands of Department of Energy scientists and collaborators worldwide. A 20-year pioneer in providing high-bandwidth, reliable connections, ESnet enables researchers at national laboratories, universities and other institutions to communicate with each other using the collaborative capabilities needed to address some of the world's most important scientific challenges. Funded principally by DOE's Office of Science, ESnet services allow scientists to make effective use of unique DOE research facilities and computing resources, independent of time and geographic location. ESnet is managed by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. For more information:

About Internet2

Internet2 is the foremost U.S. advanced networking consortium. Led by the research and education community since 1996, Internet2 promotes the missions of its members by providing both leading-edge network capabilities and unique partnership opportunities that together facilitate the development, deployment and use of revolutionary Internet technologies. Internet2 brings the U.S. research and academic community together with technology leaders from industry, government and the international community to undertake collaborative efforts that have a fundamental impact on tomorrow's Internet. For more information:

Media Contacts

Lauren Rotman, Internet2

Jon Bashor, ESnet