WPI's Advanced Networks
Professor Jim Dittami uses equipment he can share over Internet 2.
WPI Membership in Internet2
WPI is a member of Internet2. Internet2 is a consortium led by over 180 universities working in partnership with industry and government to develop and deploy advanced network applications and technologies, accelerating the creation of tomorrow's Internet. Internet2 is recreating the partnership among academia, industry and government that fostered today's Internet in its infancy.
The Internet2 Network and the Next Generation Internet
The U.S. has an additional high-bandwidth network, the Next Generation Internet (NGI), led and focused by U.S federal agencies. The Internet2 network and the NGI were developed in parallel. Internet2 and the NGI Initiative have similar objectives, focus on similar communities, work together to ensure the two networks are interoperable, and expect rich interconnection. The National Science Foundation (NSF) funds high performance connection grants. An NSF grant contributed to the Worcester Goddard GigaPoP, implemented through a WPI and NEESCom partnership.
The Robert H. Goddard GigaPoP, WPI's connection to the Internet2 Network WPI and NEESCom partnered to implement a Worcester and central New England regional connection to the Internet2 network. This connection point, The Robert H. Goddard GigaPop, is located in the NEESCom building at 474 Main Street, Worcester, MA. A regional internetworking aggregation point is called a "point of presence". An Internet2 aggregation point is called gigaPoP, referring to the gigabit speed of Internet2.
The Goddard GigaPoP connects to Internet2 via the NoX (Northern Exchange) gigaPoP in Boston via a gigabit Ethernet ring.
WPI's Research Projects to Improve the Internet
WPI's Computer Science (CS) and Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) faculty described some of their research to improve Internet performance in the NFS grant proposal. The projects utilize Internet2 to research advances in both middleware and networking functions, including those identified below.
- Data caching (an area of high-speed computer memory used for the temporary storage of frequently used data to allow faster access)
- Data mining large multivariate data sets (search for hidden information: the locating of previously unknown patterns and relationships within data using a database application, for example, the locating of customers with common interests in a retail establishment's database)
- Cryptography and data security
- Wireless research
- Protocols for fault tolerant Internet working
- Low latency (low lag time) and real time multimedia transport
- Explorations for advances in distributed processing
Advantages of the Internet2 Network
Internet2's high-bandwidth provides capabilities for functional benefits to research and education:
- Faster exchange of large data sets with remote locations connected by advanced networks such as Internet2 and NGI. Real-time access/visualization of simulation results. Faster access to remote computers that perform data analysis and simulations.
- Access and control of remote precious devices, such as MRIs, telescopes, and WPI's NMR.
- Opportunity for advanced network quality video conferencing and distant learning. CNN Headline News showed Internet's video conferencing capabilities in the November 9, 2000 broadcast, "Internet2 provides high-tech musical score". Internet2's clarity transmitted violin lessons so clearly that a remote instructor can "hear the bow position". A music concert in Atlanta showcased performers in six locations.
One or more of the functional advantages may be seen in WPI's research projects:
- Mechanical Engineering's (ME) Spacecraft Electric & Chemical Propulsion accesses visualization of remote simulation results.
- ME's Surface Meteorology project exchanges large data sets and software remotely.
- Civil and Environmental Engineering's Vehicle Crashworthiness research requires transfer of large data sets, remote simulations, and shared animations with a number of Internet2 universities.
The NSF grant proposal describes these projects in more detail. The impact to WPI increases as other collaborating institutions embrace advanced networks.
Regional universities may connect to the Goddard GigaPoP
The Goddard GigaPoP offers a competitive rate to regional universities to connect to Internet2. For details, contact Sean O'Connor at 508-831-5115 (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss membership options, technical specifications, potential applications, pricing, and how gigaPoP engineers can facilitate your local connection.
Corporations may become members of Internet2 through partnership with WPI Internet2 corporate members are committed to promoting the development and deployment of advanced Internet applications and network services. Internet2 corporate partners and sponsors have made significant commitments to collaborating with Internet2 universities. Information on Internet2 corporate membership is described on the Internet2 Web site.Maintained by itweb
Last modified: Jan 31, 2014, 19:14 EST