Friday, January 12, 2007

National LambdaRail - taking academic research to the next mile....

Q: What is the NLR?

A: The National LambdaRail (NLR) is a high-speed national computer network that runs over fiber-optics across the United States and the first transcontinental Ethernet network. The NLR is advancing the research, clinical, and educational goals of members and other institutions by establishing and maintaining this unique nationwide network infrastructure that is owned and controlled by the U.S. research community.

It currently spans across 28 N. American cities, and in contrast to Internet2 (or popularly i2, do not confuse with the suppply chain company), NLR is a university based and owned initiative.
Cisco Systems, one of the leading members of the NLR, provides the infrastructure which includes a dense wave division multiplexing (DWDM) national optical footprint, that is deployed across 15,000 route-miles of dark fiber across the country.

The goals of the NLR are clear - to push beyond the technical and performance limitations of today's Internet backbones, and use this to enable highly creative out-of-the-box experimentation and innovation. Just imagine how sophisticated this 10 Gbps (10 billion bits per second) national IP network is!

I'm currently working on strategy projects related to this, at Cisco-Public Sector, so thought I'll share some basic stuff. For more information, or to check if your school is part of this research network, please vist the NLR website

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