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IRNC:ProNet -- ACE proposal project summary

In response to NSF solicitation NSF 09-564, the ACE Project proposes a powerful, straightforward plan to provide multi-gigabit bandwidth and services connecting researchers in the US with their counterparts in Europe that will continue to serve current needs well but also extend the transatlantic exchange into further scientific fields and disciplines.

Indiana University (IU) as the lead institution in cooperative partnership with DANTE, NYSERNet, and Internet2, and in coordination with many national and multi-national R&E networks, will immediately deploy 40Gbps of bandwidth between Europe and the US using 10G carrier service offerings. With the progress of 40Gbps and 100Gbps in terrestrial networking and as 40Gbps and 100Gbps become available and affordable at transatlantic distances during the period of the project, the ACE Project will upgrade the capacity.

IU and its partners are highly qualified to undertake this proposal. For over 10 years, IU has organized and operated the NSF-funded TransPAC and TransPAC2 projects providing high-performance research network connectivity for the US to a broad set of Asian research networks. IU also operates its Global Research Network Operations Center (IU Global NOC) which provides NOC capabilities to the Internet2 Network, National LambdaRail, and several other regional and international R&E networks. DANTE is the operator of the pan-European network GÉANT. GÉANT provides service to all of the national research and education (R&E) networks in Europe. NYSERNet is a partner in MAN LAN, one of the premier US-based international R&E exchange points. NYSERNet manages collocation space in the privately owned carrier facility at 32 Avenue of the Americas in lower Manhattan where the MAN LAN Exchange Point is located. Internet2 is the leading US research and educational networking organization representing 300 member institutions and connecting thousands of institutions across the US. Internet2 runs the MAN LAN Exchange Point in partnership with NYSERNET and the IU Global NOC.

Broader impact: Bandwidth procurement alone is not the purpose of this collaboration. Technical and operational collaboration and planning are critical in supporting science and engineering research. Education between the US and European communities is the overarching goal. Through cooperative partnership with DANTE and the GÉANT community of more than 34 national R&E networks that will be reachable through these connections, the ACE Project will provide the best economies of scale in transatlantic connectivity, supporting a very broad community of users.

Integrating research and education and diversity: IU will partner with the existing Gerald L. Bepko Internship Program at IU, which has as its goal "identifying, connecting and working with students in populations under-represented in information technology," to extend educational reach and integrate diversity into the ACE program. See the accompanying letter of support.

Intellectual merit: As part of the DICE collaboration—a collaboration among the major R&E networks in North America and Europe—the ACE partners will expand and enhance services in security, measurement, identity management, and operational integration. Close cooperation among the DICE participants’ efforts will maximize US-EU connectivity, increase collaborations (particularly with respect to security), ensure deployment of accurate and useful measurement technology, deploy dynamic circuit services to meet the needs of high-bandwidth applications, and decrease costs by eliminating duplication of effort.