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GN4-3N project celebrates another major milestone and sees impressive OPEX savings

GN4-3N - GEANT Network Western Ring Completed

The EC-funded GÉANT (GN4-3N) project – the most significant refresh and enlargement of the pan-European GÉANT network in a decade – this week marked another major milestone with the completion of migration of services from the existing London to Paris and Paris to Geneva routes on to the new GN4-3N dark fibre infrastructure. These two routes form the last segments of the ‘Western Ring’.

The ‘Western Ring’ is a significant portion of the GÉANT network connecting London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Geneva, and Paris, and this has now successfully been fully migrated to the new GN4-3N infrastructure, representing not just a major milestone in a vast project, but making real the ongoing OPEX savings that have been a key objective of the overall project from day one.

Following the latest migrations, connectivity costs on the Western Ring have dropped by an impressive 46% already and will improve still further once the last fibre routes in this area are removed in the coming months with eventual cost savings of 72%!

The completion of the ‘Western Ring’ follows the previously completed Iberian Peninsula region, however this is the first time that like-for-like routes have been migrated to the new infrastructure.

The remainder of routes on the new network are currently within a carefully planned procurement, build, or deployment stage and will continue to be announced as they move into operation.

Completion of the €50.5m project will see the majority of GÉANT NRENs connected on fibre or spectrum, helping to further narrow Europe’s digital divide and continue to support the needs of the data-intensive research and education communities for another 15 years.

Despite a challenging environment imposed by both the ongoing pandemic and a global semiconductor shortage, the project is on track and making excellent progress thanks in no small part to the commitment of our valued suppliers as well as the dedication and hard work of teams within GÉANT and partner NRENs.

GN4-3N Programme Manager Paul Shelswell adds, “The latest route activations and service migrations were successfully completed on time, building on the lessons learned from the earlier migrations completed in late 2021. The timescale to go from first site surveys on Western Ring routes to having all services running on the new GN4-3N infrastructure was a very impressive 11 months – this is testament to the excellent teamwork developed between the GÉANT GN4-3N project team, external fibre providers, Infinera, and the internal GÉANT Implementation, Operations Centre and Service Management teams. We look forward to progressing the deployment of the next phases of GN4-3N covering the Baltic region and eastern Europe whilst focussing on the next phases of migration in the coming months.”

Learn more on the GÉANT Network website: https://network.geant.org

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