An African perspective on R&E networking in s ub-Saharan Africa - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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An African perspective on R&E networking in s ub-Saharan Africa

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  1. An African perspective on R&E networking in sub-Saharan Africa Meeting on enhancing research and education networking within and to Africa Washington DC, 5 May 2005 Duncan MartinCEO of TENET

  2. What’s meant by“Research and Education Networking”? • In the developed world: • ensuring that advanced networking traffic is not disabled by congestion from commodity-type traffic • developing next-generation networking and applications in research and higher education. • In Africa, south of the Sahara: • securing affordable Internet access; • special “holy cow” deals for research and education institutions; • relaxed VSAT license conditions • enabling participation in collaborative international research projects. Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  3. The reasons are well-known • Terrestrial communications infrastructure is sparse (except in South Africa) • Many countries still have a single incumbent operator protected by restrictive license regulations • Full cost of long-haul connectivity to “the Internet” in Europe and the USA has to be borne by the Africans • Punitive cost of cross-border circuits within Africa Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  4. The University of Witwatersrand 11.3 Mb/s Internet access Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  5. The University of Swaziland 192 kb/s Internet access Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  6. SAT-3 / SAWC / SAFE Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  7. SAT-3 connectivityto and from South Africa • Layer 2 pipes between Cape Town or Johannesburg and • New York, NY • Ashburn, VA • London • Amsterdam • Back up pipe via SAFE cable • Westwards around the World from New York • GRE tunnel between Géant and TENET network • Géant PoP in London TENET’s Cape Town gateway • Shares TENET’s SAT-3 bandwidth (~ 100 Mb/s) Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  8. Cable versus VSAT (1) • In South Africa • TELKOM SA’s exclusive SAT-3 landing rights last through 2007 • Sentech has satellite landing rights (as does TELKOM SA) • TELKOM SA has a comprehensive broadband national network • Capacity leased by commercial ISPs • TELKOM SA is by far the largest ISP…. • 3 other 1st tier ISPs; 200+ resellers • Long haul via SAT-3 and SAFE cables, satellite • TENET institutions have a special deal from TELKOM SA • Latency via SAT-3 to New York: 220 ms • Cost of Internet access to TENET institutions in SA • around $ 4.00 per kb/s (full duplex) per month Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  9. Cable versus VSAT (2) • Second Network Operator (SNO) • has extensive fiber connectivity into neighboring countries • will become useful one day (2006?) • EASSy cable planned for 2008 • Tata Communications has shareholdings in • SNO and EASSy Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  10. Cable versus VSAT (3) • Elsewhere: Sparsity of terrestrial infrastructure limits usefulness of SAT-3 • Even in Nigeria, Ghana, …. • Campuses rely mostly on VSAT services • Some exceptions (e.g. U of Dar-es-Salaam) • Consortial procurement (“Partnership universities”) • Carnegie Corp, Ford, MacArthur, Rockefeller • Leadership from African Virtual University • Latency to New York: 550 ms • Cost to institutions • Special deals around $2.00 per kb/s (half-duplex) per month (plus cost of satellite dish) Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  11. About TENET • Non-profit, private company • Incorporated in 2000 • Owned jointly by the 24 public universities in SA • Extending ownership to public research institutions • Appointed by each institution as its agent for procuring Internet access • 45 institutions; 90 connected campuses; 100 Mb/s on SAT-3 • Negotiated special deals with TELKOM SA • Runs program to develop IT support capacity • Training, coaching, technical workshops • Funded by Andrew W Mellon Foundation Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  12. The SARUA initiative • Southern African Regional Universities Association • Launched in March 2005 • 46 public universities in the SADC region • 26 have access to SAT-3 • 20 use VSAT connectivity • SARUA envisages • adopting a TENET-like agency model • Negotiating a common VSAT deal for SARUA universities • Lobbying, where necessary, for relaxation of VSAT license restrictions and/or fees • Achieving a shared connection to Géant / Internet2 Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  13. The “strong agent” model • Each participating institution authorizes the Agent to • Negotiate and enter into service provider agreements on its behalf • Administer the agreement (handling orders, billings, payments,..) • Levy an agency fee to cover the agent’s direct costs. • This puts the Agent in a very strong negotiating position • Moral and political pressure can be very helpful • on incumbent operators • from international donors and agencies Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  14. Beyond Internet access – becoming part of the global REN • SA Government is creating SANReN • Department of Science and Technology (DST) • Has contracted TENET’s assistance • Needs of “big e-science” projects • Radio and optical astronomy, VLBI, ALICE Project, tropical medicine • Inter-connection with TENET network • “Connectable” institutions in other countries welcome • Will support IPv6 • EC very supportive • dedicated connection to Géant (1 Gb/s?) • In place by year-end • SKA bid grabs the imagination! Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  15. Beyond Internet access – high performance computing • Center for High Performance Computing • Being planned as a national facility • To be located in Cape Town • Operated by CSIR • Supported by SA Government (DST) • Accessed via SANReN Tertiary Education Network of South Africa

  16. Thanks for listening! Tertiary Education Network of South Africa