Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                         CONTACT:
March 10, 1999                                     Sean Fulton
                                                   Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center
                                                   (412) 268-4960

                                                   Greg Wood
                                                   (202) 872-9119

New Research Network Collaborates with the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center

PITTSBURGH — The National Center for Network Engineering (NCNE), a resource group of the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC), will provide engineering services for Abilene, a new national research network. Under the agreement, which is effective immediately, NCNE will coordinate with technical staff at more than 70 universities nationwide to provide operational support, documentation, training, and testing of new network technologies.

Abilene, which became operational in February, is an advanced network for educational and research applications. It serves as a "backbone" network for the Internet2 project, a consortium of universities, industry and government formed to develop the next generation of internet technologies for research, teaching and learning. Abilene currently serves 50 universities, with more than 70 Internet2 institutions planning to connect by the end of 1999. It moves data at 2.4 billion bits per second, a speed 45,000 times faster than a personal computer modem.

"We welcome NCNE as the newest partner on the Abilene team," said Terry Rogers, director of the Abilene project. "NCNE's proven leadership in advanced networking will provide invaluable support to institutions connecting to the new Abilene network."

NCNE brings more than a decade of experience with advanced network engineering to the Abilene project. Since 1986, PSC networking staff have been involved with emerging network technologies from NSFnet to the current Internet. In 1998 the National Science Foundation established NCNE at PSC to serve as the engineering support component of the National Laboratory for Advanced Network Research. With the Abilene project, NCNE will expand the services it already provides for over 100 institutions connecting to the very high-performance Backbone Network Service (vBNS) developed by MCI/Worldcom and the National Science Foundation.

"We look forward to the opportunity and challenge of participating with Abilene in forging the network technologies of the future," said Gwendolyn Huntoon, director of NCNE. "It's also significant for this region, in that making Abilene available to Pennsylvania universities helps to keep this region at the forefront of high technology."

Connections to Abilene funnel through network aggregation points known as gigaPoPs. The Pittsburgh gigaPoP, which is operated by NCNE, will provide access to Abilene for the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University and the Pennsylvania State University.

For more information about NCNE, see: http://ncne.nlanr.net/

Abilene is a project of the University Corporation for Advanced Internet Development (UCAID), home of the Internet2 project. In partnership with Qwest Communications, Cisco Systems, Nortel Networks and Indiana University, UCAID is deploying Abilene as the most advanced and far-reaching research and education network in the United States. For more information on Abilene, see: http://www.internet2.edu/abilene/

The Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center is a joint effort of Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh together with Westinghouse Electric Company. It was established in 1986 and is supported by several federal agencies, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and private industry.

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© Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC)
Revised: March 10, 1999

URL: http://www.psc.edu/publicinfo/news/1999/abilene_03-10-1999.html