CAESAR will examine the establishment of a direct connection between the pan-European network GÉANT and similar research networks in South America. It will explore the demand for such a connection, the costs associated with it, as well as the benefits. Key players in South American research networking will be involved as appropriate. The objective is to produce a comprehensive analysis of options with recommendations for implementation.
There are strong historical links between South American countries and, in particular, the countries of the Iberian peninsula in Europe. They share common history and linguistic heritage and there is, consequently, significant interest in providing direct research network connectivity between Europe and the South America region to support current and potential co-operative research between the two regions.
Developments in research networking in South America mean that countries are now becoming equipped with a National Research & Education Network. In Europe, GÉANT is providing a much enhanced pan-European research Internet with speeds at up to 10 Gbit/s and with the European Distributed Access as an integral feature of the network designed to facilitate connections between Europe and other world regions. GÉANT is based on IP router technology to provide a variety of services, which connects 31 different European countries. DANTE is the co-ordinating partner for this project. There is significant scope for collaboration between European researchers and those in South America. The objective of the CAESAR project is to investigate the possibilities for direct connection between the two regions.
An important goal is to understand and develop interest in South America in such a connection, as well as to look at the funding and decision making processes involved in the individual countries. Part of the project consists of face to face discussions with network organisation managers in South America to explore demand funding and operational implications.
There are a number of areas of co-operative research and development that are carried out over research Internet connections within South America. Most of these connections transit via the North American Internet. As a result, Quality of Service available is, at best, indifferent and it is difficult to form a picture of the true user demand. A key aspect of the study is to provide a systematic quantification of the demand for connectivity between South American researchers together with a translation of this into possible capacity. In addition, we will explore plans for intra-regional co-operation in South America and the possibility of exploiting this for connectivity with Europe.
A workshop among interested parties from Europe and South America will be held to progress the work. There are a number of areas of R&D co-operation today. These are generally in the scientific and engineering field. Direct connectivity would be of principal benefit to researchers in these disciplines. In addition there are a number of potential user groups who co-operate internationally. The demand analysis will quantify potential as well as actual current demand.
In South America, there has been considerable development of similar National Research and Education Networks. There is also significant interest in developing scientific and technical co-operation with Europe from a number of countries in South America. There is, however, today no direct connection between South America and European Research Networks.
By examining, co-operatively with interested parties in South America, the possibilities for providing direct connections between Research Networks in two continents, as well as considering the cost benefits and opportunities for exploiting such connections, the project will build awareness of IST in South America. The proposed solutions will be targeted at increasing access to universities and research centres by developing research Internet connectivity to support co-operation.
The primary aim is to improve research connectivity with other world regions. By understanding the potential requirements for co-operation between South American researchers and European researchers, as well as the economic implications and potential implementation modalities, we will be in a position to develop the specific proposal for interconnection.
The work will generate three elements. Firstly, a review of the state of development of research networking in South America. Secondly, the summary results of a workshop of interested parties. Finally, a complete analysis of the requirements, costs and benefits for direct connection between European Research Networks and their South American counterparts. It is expected that a case will be made for a direct connection between the two world regions, together with proposals for funding.
Funding SchemeACM - Preparatory, accompanying and support measures