GÉANT is delighted to announce that the EC-Funded GN5-IC1 project – delivering the first phase of GÉANT’s new Intercontinental Connectivity investment programme – marked its first major achievement, with the successful implementation of a new 100Gbps link between GÉANT’s pan-European Research and Education network and Singapore.
The new route, now operational, interconnects GÉANT’s backbone network in Marseille to the SingAREN Open Exchange (SOE) in Singapore, the neutral Internet Exchange point hosted by Singapore’s National Research and Education Network SingAREN, where GÉANT is now planning to interconnect with its international partners in the region.
The establishment of direct high-speed connectivity to the Singapore hub is a fundamental step in the GN5-IC1 plans to reinforce GÉANT’s intercontinental connectivity with the Asia-Pacific region, an area already accounting for almost 20% of all GÉANT’s intercontinental traffic and registering growing demand. Ultimately, the new link aims to respond to the increasingly intensive needs and requirements of global scientific collaboration and is set to boost collaborative research between Europe and partnering countries in the Asia-Pacific.
Additionally, the new capacity will contribute to the capabilities of the recently expanded Asia-Pacific Europe Ring (AER) – the co-operative arrangement among leading-edge Research and Education Networks in Europe and in the Asia-Pacific region, to provide mutual back-up arrangements, improve network reliability and ensure greater network resilience.
Building on the successful experiences of the GN4-3N and BELLA projects, the GN5-IC1 project represents a paradigm shift in GÉANT’s intercontinental connectivity, in particular by focusing on long-term strategic investments and planning. Thanks to the generous funding provided by the EC via the GN5-IC1 project, GÉANT was able to secure its new link to Singapore along the Asia Africa Europe-1 (AAE-1) cable under a 7-year Indefeasible Rights of Use (IRU) contract, signed with the leading telecommunications provider PCCW Global.
Bram Peeters, Chief Network Operations Officer at GÉANT: “In establishing GÉANT’s new link to Singapore we are very consciously applying the learnings of earlier projects. Long-term guaranteed capacity between the right locations is essential for us to support the challenging network needs of global research and education for the years to come. With our new capacity towards the Asia-Pacific we are definitely on the right track, and GN5-IC1 will bring us more.”
The SingAREN Open Exchange (SOE) proved to be the ideal hub for GÉANT’s connectivity in the Asia-Pacific, as an already established central hub for international connectivity and in line with the recently launched Digital Partnership between the EU and Singapore (EUSDP).
Paul Rouse, Chief Community Relations Officer at GÉANT: “Considering that 25% of GÉANT’s network traffic is either being destined for, or having an origin outside of Europe, and that the Asia-Pacific region represents a large portion of that traffic, delivering new connectivity to Singapore marks a needed and significant milestone in GÉANT’s intercontinental connectivity strategy. This was made possible thanks to the skills and expertise of GÉANT colleagues and of our Research and Education Network partners, instrumental in coordinating this investment and working closely with the industry. Finally, I would like to welcome our collaboration with PCCW Global, which will help us to ensure excellent service quality for Research and Education networks in the region.”
Next steps for GN5-IC1
In parallel with the renewal of connectivity with partners in the Asia-Pacific via the Singapore link, GN5-IC1 will now bring its focus towards transatlantic connectivity, and specifically towards the upgrade of GÉANT’s connectivity with North America. Engagement with infrastructure providers already started in the first quarter of 2023, in preparation for the upcoming tender to procure North Atlantic connectivity, which is expected later in the year.
About the GN5-IC1 Project
Launched in December 2022 and with a duration of 36-months, GN5-IC1 is a new project in GÉANT’s portfolio, funded as part of the GN5 Framework Partnership Agreement in Horizon Europe, and sister project to the GÉANT GN5-1 project. Its ambition is to plan and implement the first phase of a new intercontinental connectivity investment programme for the GÉANT European Research and Education community, as well as to put in place a mid- to long-term investment plan for GÉANT.
For further information about GN5-IC1, visit the official webpage of the project and read the latest interview with the project’s team: https://connect.geant.org/2023/03/09/geant-stepping-up-its-intercontinental-connectivity-interview-with-the-gn5-ic1-project-team