Nokia, Nomios Group to triple capacity for GÉANT European research network

As part of an internet protocol multi-protocol label switching (IP/MPLS) routing and switching replacement project, GÉANT, the collaboration of European national research and education networks (NRENs), has announced it will be the first institution of its kind in the world to deploy 800 Gigabit Ethernet (GE) routing interfaces, tripling capacity and supercharging its 50,000km network by establishing a resilient and secure foundation for extreme collaboration and knowledge-sharing among an international alliance of researchers.

GÉANT interconnects 40 NRENs in 40 European countries, and links 50 million users and institutions to more than 100 additional NRENs in every region of the world.

The high-performance IP backbone network will be the foundation for a global coalition of researchers focused on breakthrough research across disciplines such as high-energy physics, biomedicine, radio astronomy and climate-impacting weather conditions.

Over the past five years, the GÉANT network has experienced 30% traffic growth each year, and is now carrying more than 7 Petabytes of data daily. This is due, in large part, to the proliferation of instruments such as telescopes, sensors and detectors, which gather more data with greater precision, sensitivity and speed. Supercomputers process vast volumes of data, analysing and validating findings. Given the high level of collaboration between allied institutions, that data must be transferred rapidly, reliably, securely and cost-effectively.

The GÉANT GN5 IP/MPLS routing and switching infrastructure replacement project addresses these needs, and will see leading comms tech provider Nokia and cyber security and networking solutions and services firm Nomios Group to deploy what they say will be a state-of-the-art IP/MPLS offering as part of a 10-year frame agreement.

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This represents a strategic go-to-market partnership between Nomios and Nokia, bringing together Nomios’s experience in designing and implementing robust networking services, combined with Nokia’s expertise in delivering IP network technology for critical networks. Under the terms of the agreement, Nomios and Nokia will undertake the complete replacement and upgrade of GÉANT’s existing IP/MPLS routing and switching infrastructure, ensuring enhanced scalability, security and reliability for GÉANT’s extensive network operations.

Additionally, Nomios and Nokia will provide comprehensive support and maintenance services to ensure uninterrupted connectivity and smooth operations for GÉANT and its vast user base.

In practice, the Nokia 7750 Service Router IP/MPLS platform, which uses in-house-developed FP5 network processing silicon, is designed to scale in support of the most demanding workloads. The FP5 chipset supports 800G transmission, which triples capacity in the existing footprint and is claimed to give GÉANT access to more bandwidth than any other routing technology available today.

A layer of network protection is integrated directly into the chipset to ensure the integrity of research data as security threats – such as DDoS attacks and data breaches – grow in size and severity. Power consumption technology is said to deliver a 75% reduction in energy use over previous routing chipsets – giving GÉANT the runway to handle ever greater volumes of data while adhering to its sustainability goals.

“We are pleased to extend our relationship with Nomios and Nokia by deploying Nokia’s high-performance IP networking technology across our extensive network infrastructure,” said GÉANT chief technology officer Bram Peeters.

“The solution adds the capabilities we need to address the anticipated exponential growth in data and our security concerns. This project ensures that GÉANT modernises and maintains the essential world-class network the research and education communities rely on both in Europe and more than 100 countries across every region.”

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Stephane Haulbert, Nokia’s partner business leader in Europe, added: “We are excited to partner with Nomios and be the first to bring 800GE speeds to such bandwidth-intensive and rigorous research environments as GÉANT.

“This is a real achievement that demonstrates how our leading IP technology delivers the capacity, resilience and security required for these essential, massive-capacity networks, with the optimised energy consumption the industry needs to meet their sustainability targets. We look forward to being a part of the continued success of GÉANT as an essential network provider advancing research, education and innovation on a global scale.”

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