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High-performance Smart 100G New Opportunities Created by Connecting to the World Taiwan’s 100G Research and Education Network Formally Begins Operating2016/10/06

The 100G research and education backbone network jointly established by the Ministry of Education, National Center for High-performance Computing (NCHC), and Academia Sinica formally began operating today (10/6), not only upgrading Taiwan’s research and education network to 100G for high-performance smart applications, but also taking strides towards a new milestone.

The NCHC, MOE, Academia Sinica, and the heads of universities announced to launch TWAREN 100G network

The original academic research network only had a bandwidth of roughly 10G, far lower than advanced countries. The National Science Council in 2012 decided to let the Ministry of Education, NCHC, and Academia Sinica formulate the “Academic Research Backbone Network Bandwidth Expansion Plan,” and plan a high quality, high bandwidth research and education backbone network. The plan won the 2013 Outstanding Award in the “Innovative Economic and Technological Development” category among systems established, participated, and recommended by central and local agencies subordinate to the Executive Yuan, and was the only plan to receive the award in the category.

Construction of the research and education backbone network formally began in 2015, and went through infrastructure construction, changing new and old equipment, and connections migration. Trial operations began in April this year from the main nodes in Academia Sinica, Taipei, Hsinchu, Taichung, and Tainan to 13 network regional centers and educational network centers of counties and cities. All connections were finally completed after five months of adjustments and testing, increasing the network’s performance 10-fold.

The new generation research and education network with 100G bandwidth consists of optical network equipment and optical fiber, and implements a dual uplink to two different core nodes architecture for backup, preventing network congestion and even suspension when a single node malfunctions. This also changes the old model of telecom operators renting bandwidth into renting dark fibers. In the future, bandwidth can be expanded by adding equipment/circuit boards, not only lowering rental cost, but also increasing autonomy when expanding bandwidth, making it possible to flexibly establish dedicated bandwidth for teaching, research, and application services.

The new 100G research and education network can alleviate current network congestions, and with the smart network management technologies of the NCHC, the 100G network will be able to provide network services with higher performance, higher availability, and dynamic bandwidth allocation. The “network quality monitoring and network performance measurement tool” developed by the NCHC provides a graphics and a visualized tool for monitoring network status and performance in real-time. This allows early detection of abnormal connections and performance issues, achieving automated monitoring and an early-warning mechanism, so that the network can maintain in the best connection status. The NCHC also established the most advanced smart network service on SDN, which is capable of rapidly establishing peer-to-peer dedicated broadband service, making network use highly flexible and achieving better infrastructure utilization.

The NCHC also disclosed relevant information, such as speed and stability, so that academic and research units using the network will be able to obtain the information of the flow and performance of the backbone network. When an error occurs, network administrators of academic and research units can use tools to test the connection speed to websites or nodes, significantly shortening the amount of time searching for network issues.

Completion of the “Research and Education Backbone Network Bandwidth Expansion Plan” will provide the research and education network with a distribution mechanism and overall bandwidth usage analysis and management, supporting the development of cloud computing for education and new generation e-learning plans of the Ministry of Education, while promoting extensive applications of multimedia and video. Furthermore, in response to the arrival of the big data era, it will also significantly shorten waiting time for data transfer of domestic academic research, such as environmental disaster prevention, biomedicine and pharmaceuticals, and high energy physics, accelerating research efficiency to achieve more innovation and breakthroughs.

New developments are being made in network technology every day, and it has become an indispensible part of daily life, playing a growing role in education and academic research as well. The Ministry of Education, NCHC, and Academia Sinica worked together to achieve the goal of upgrading the new generation backbone network to 100G, providing faster, more flexible, more stable, and higher performance services to domestic academic and research units for teaching, research, and experiments, facilitating academic research and education upgrade.

We believe the new generation 100G high speed network will drive research, development and innovation in industry, academia and research sectors, enhancing Taiwan’s overall scientific research capabilities and international competitiveness!

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