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BOREAS-Net : Broadband Optical Research, Education and Sciences Network. Paul Lustgraaf Mike McQuiston March 30, 2007. What is BOREAS-Net?. Boreas is the Greek god of the north wind

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Boreas net broadband optical research education and sciences network

BOREAS-Net : Broadband Optical Research, Education and Sciences Network

Paul Lustgraaf

Mike McQuiston

March 30, 2007

What is boreas net
What is BOREAS-Net?

  • Boreas is the Greek god of the north wind

  • BOREAS-Net stands for: Broadband Optical Research Education And Science Network (yes, the acronym was reverse-engineered!)

  • A consortium formed to build a Regional Optical Network (RON)

  • See web page at

What is boreas net1
What is BOREAS-Net?

  • Connects members to the national research nets in Chicago and Kansas City

  • Connects to other RONs especially in Chicago with CIC OmniPoP and StarLight

  • Also connects to more affordable and diverse commercial Internet services

Who belongs to boreas net
Who belongs to BOREAS-Net?

  • The founding members of BOREAS-Net are:

    • Iowa State University

    • University of Iowa

    • University of Minnesota

    • University of Wisconsin – Madison

Why do we need amplifiers
Why Do We Need Amplifiers?

  • Signal strength is lost with distance due to absorption. This is called attenuation.

  • Attenuation varies by fiber type.

  • Signal strength can be boosted by amplifiers.

  • Amplifiers must typically be used every 70 to 100 kilometers.

Access sites1
Access Sites

  • Kansas City – Colo in I2 Suite at Level3

    • Same facility as NLR

  • Chicago – Colo in StarLight and in I2 Suite at Level3 (900 N Kingsbury, AKA 600 W Chicago)

    • NLR is at 111 N Canal (facility was space and power limited)

    • CIC has dark fiber between sites

Access sites2
Access Sites

  • Two Access Nodes on each participating Campus

    • Diverse fiber paths to campus and diverse Nodes on campus

  • Extra Access Nodes

    • Eau Claire, Milwaukee, St. Paul

Transport services
Transport Services

  • 10G Ethernet Wave Transport

  • OC192c SONET Wave Transport

  • 1G Ethernet Sub-Wave Transport

  • SONET Sub-Wave Transport (OC3-OC48, by special request only)


  • Each wave supports 10 Gigabits.

  • Currently configured for ten 10G waves.

    • 100 Gbps per segment.

  • Can be expanded in ten wave increments.

  • Equipment can support up to 80 waves.

    • For a total of 800 Gbps on each segment.

Creating boreas net
Creating BOREAS-Net

  • CIOs agreed in principle on Nov. 1, 2004 to create a RON

  • A technical team was tasked with issuing an RFP for dark fiber

  • Fiber RFP was issued June 17, 2005

  • CIOs agreed to an MOU on Dec. 19, 2005, formally creating BOREAS-Net

Buying fiber
Buying Fiber

  • Wisconsin and Minnesota already owned fiber along the I94 corridor

  • BOREAS-Net purchased 455 miles of fiber from Wiltel(Level3) on Dec 21, 2005

  • BOREAS-Net purchased 391 miles of fiber from FiberLink Mar 2, 2006

  • Some laterals were also purchased for Ames,IA from McLeod and ICN

Buying hardware
Buying Hardware

  • Optronics RFP released Mar 3, 2006

  • Contract with Infinera signed Oct. 9, 2006

  • First hardware shipped Dec 4, 2006

  • First segment install started Dec 13, 2006

  • First wave provisioned Jan 17, 2007

  • All segments accepted Jan 24, 2007

Current status
Current Status

  • 1,544 miles of fiber are lit with Infinera DWDM gear

  • 100 Gbps configured

  • 14 add-drop nodes and 22 amplifiers

  • Fiscal Agent is University of Minnesota

  • NOC services by WiscNet

  • Field service contract with Level3

Hut environment
Hut Environment

  • Multiple rooms, each with air conditioning.

  • DC power plant with several hours of battery capacity.

  • Generator backup power.

  • Remote monitoring of: door access, temperature, power.

Boreas net costs
BOREAS-Net Costs

  • Capital Costs: $6.3M

    • Dual nodes on major campuses added about 10%, but increase reliability greatly.

  • Annual Operating Costs about $1.0M

  • Costs are shared among members.

Next steps for boreas net
Next Steps For BOREAS-Net

  • Test lab in Madison:

    • Includes Terminal Node, Add-Drop Node, Three-Way Node, and Amplifier Node

  • Build circuits

  • Finalize procedures for operation

  • Establish Network Operations Center

National networks
National Networks

  • New Internet2 network.

  • National LambdaRail (NLR)

  • Regional Optical Networks (RONs)

  • Northern Tier Network Consortium


Future directions
Future Directions

  • Work with Northern Tier

    • To Fargo, North Dakota.

    • Maybe eventually all the way to Seattle

    • Maybe to Winnipeg

    • South Dakota is looking at options

  • Expand foot print within Primary States

    • Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin

National developments
National Developments

  • Internet2 and National Lambda Rail have agreed to merge by June 2007.

  • The disposition of the two national networks is unclear at this time.

Implications for isu
Implications for ISU

  • Commodity Internet.

  • Internet2 connection.

  • Waves for research projects.

  • Other uses.

Commodity internet connections
Commodity Internet Connections

  • ISU will use BOREAS-Net for our commodity Internet connections.

  • ISU will connect to one or more Internet Service Providers (ISP) in Kansas City.

  • U of Iowa will connect in Chicago.

  • We will provide backup to each other.

  • We also act as an ISP to the ICN.

Internet2 connection
Internet2 connection

  • ISU will connect to the Great Plains Network (GPN) in Kansas City at 10 Gbps.

  • GPN will connect to the Internet2 network at 10 Gbps.

  • U of Iowa will connect in Chicago.

  • We will back each other up.

Waves for projects
Waves for Projects

  • Both 1 Gbps and 10 Gbps waves will be available for research projects. These can be connected to other networks to get almost anywhere in the world.

  • SONET connections (OC3 to OC192) can be accommodated by special arrangement.

Other uses for boreas waves
Other uses for BOREAS waves

  • Off-site backups

    • Storage at Iowa City?

    • Disaster recovery?

  • Dynamic waves

    • For example, an astronomy project may need to be connected to San Diego today, Japan tomorrow, and Hawaii the day after.

Competing for grants
Competing For Grants

  • Grants today often involve extensive collaboration and sharing of large datasets. BOREAS allows ISU to compete for these grants, e.g. the BP grant.

  • The connectivity provided by BOREAS eliminates some of our geographical disadvantage compared to peer institutions.

Wave pricing
Wave Pricing

  • 1 Gbps: $25K per year

  • 10 Gbps: $160K per year

  • These prices get you from the edge of campus to anywhere BOREAS goes. Other networks may have additional charges.

  • Depending on your situation, it may cost more to get from the edge of campus to your location.

Contact us
Contact Us!

  • Angela Bradley

    • [email protected]

    • 294-4514

  • Mike McQuiston

    • [email protected]

    • 294-8558

  • Paul Lustgraaf

    • [email protected]

    • 294-0324

Thank you

Thank You