Jisc, which provides digital solutions for education and research in the UK, is set to upgrade its Janet Network to provide high-capacity 400Gbit/s connectivity.
The upgrade is expected to make it one of the most digitally-advanced national research and education networks globally in terms of scale, automation and network intelligence.
Janet, which is said to be the busiest NREN in Europe by volume of data carried and is 200,000 times faster than the average home broadband, is deploying Ciena’s 6500 packet-optical platforms powered with WaveLogic Ai coherent optics. Currently, the Janet Network is operating at 400Gbit/s capacity in places, but using 100Gbit/s technology.
The upgrade, which will be in place in summer 2018, will increase the bandwidth of the Janet backbone to as much as 600Gbit/s and utilise Ciena’s new 400Gbit/s technology.
It has been designed to meet demands for high bandwidth for various applications, including internet video and high-definition TV, by increasing speeds over existing fibre connections.
All higher education organisations, including universities, colleges and research centres in the UK, are connected to the internet through the Janet Network, along with some alternative education providers, other public bodies and science parks.
Jisc network infrastructure director Jeremy Sharp said: “Our vision is for the UK to be at the forefront of scientific research. To make that happen, we must have a highly robust network powered with industry-leading technology that can scale to support bandwidth-intensive applications like genome editing and The Square Kilometre Array.
“Working with Ciena, the Janet Network was the first NREN to provide 100GB for users and, as demand has grown, is now the first to provide 400GB. WaveLogic Ai enables us to operate efficiently and accurately engineer the network for optimal capacity to manage massive flows from new data-intensive research activities.”
Ciena chief technologist for research networks Rod Wilson said: “We are helping to bring a new paradigm for optical networks by making the network more programmable and responsive to changing user demands while using less hardware. WaveLogic Ai focuses on delivering considerable digital advantage, financial savings and efficiencies.”