Thursday, 25 August 2016 10:50

AARNet and Southern Cross upgrade Pacific link to 100Gbps Featured

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The Southern Cross Trans-Pacific Optical Research Testbed (SXTransPORT) dual submarine optical fibre links between Sydney and North America have been upgraded to 100Gbps.

Australia’s Academic and Research Network (AARNet) and Southern Cross Cable Network have completed the upgrade of the trans-Pacific link.

Both SXTransPORT links previously operated at 40Gbps. The Sydney-Suva-Honolulu-Seattle link was completed in June 2013, with Sydney-Auckland-Mauna Lani-Los Angeles following two years ago.

The underlying cables were commissioned in late 2000/early 2001, with an initial capacity of 80Gbps. The total installed capacity is now 5.4Tbps, and technology trials have confirmed a potential capacity of at least 14Tbps.

The SXTransPORT100Gbps upgrade was needed to cope with the growth in research and education traffic driven by data-intensive science.

“With research today increasingly collaborative, global and data-intensive, increasing the bandwidth of the SXTransPORT network ensures Australia continues to make significant contributions to global research endeavours, such as the Large Hadron Collider, the development of the Square Kilometre Array, the World Climate Research Program and important advances in the health and medical research sector,” said AARNet chief executive Chris Hancock.

The AARNet/Southern Cross partnership, with funding from the Commonwealth government and the United States National Science Foundation (among others), also integrates New Zealand's REANNZ research network, connects astronomical observatories in Hawaii, and provides broadband connectivity for several isolated Pacific Island countries including University of the South Pacific campuses in Fiji, Tonga and the Marshall Islands.

“Southern Cross is proud to be a long-term supporter of scientific and research endeavours through its partnership with AARNet," said Southern Cross president and chief execcutive Anthony Briscoe.

"By extending the network to connect to REANNZ and Pacific Island countries, the SXTransPORT project is an example of a truly exciting initiative in which all partners have worked together collaboratively to bring about great achievements for the region."

Southern Cross is owned by Spark NZ (50%), Singtel-Optus (40%) and Verizon Business (10%).


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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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