Jisc and Neos Networks partner on Northwest England dark fibre

Neos Networks and confirmed that it has been chosen by Jisc to deliver a new dark fibre network spanning the Northwest of England. The new network will replace Jisc’s existing Janet North network which currently serves the region.

The new network will provide gigabit capability to all the sites using the new network, with some seeing a ten-fold speed increase compared to their current offering and all achieving high-capacity speeds up to 100Gbps.

The Northwest is one of Jisc’s busiest regional centres serving more than 150 sites across the region including large universities in Manchester, Liverpool and Lancaster. Numerous colleges, and major research establishments such as Jodrell Bank, and the Science & Technology Facilities Council laboratory at Daresbury, which is the central point for handling data arriving in the UK from the Hadron Collider in CERN’s Switzerland laboratory.

Pete Asman, managing director for public sector and enterprise, Neos Networks, said, “Our relationship with Jisc goes back some 20 years and we are very pleased to take on this latest rebuild to significantly upgrade the Janet network in the Northwest of England. Traffic on the network continues to grow exponentially, and the new gigabit fibre capability will ensure that Jisc stays ahead of the requirement in terms of speed, capacity and future growth for its member universities, colleges and research centres.”

The contract was awarded following a competitive tendering process and is the latest instalment in Jisc’s ongoing overhaul and rationalisation of 15 regional networks connected into the organisation’s national backbone infrastructure.

As well as this latest Northwest network contract, Neos has also secured contracts to upgrade and merge two Midlands networks into one new high-speed, high-capacity network, and also the contract covering Jisc’s South of England network.

Jeremy Sharp, chief technology officer at Jisc, added, “The network will play a key role in the ongoing shift to the hybrid learning environment, as well as the greater dependence on cloud-based resources that is being experienced across the higher education sector.

“This agreement helps future proof our network, provides 5G backhaul capability for our members, and ensures we can deliver value for money not only to our member organisations, but also to those commercial customers that seek access to our services.”

Deployment of the network will begin immediately and Jisc expects it to begin offering services to member institutions as early as the third quarter of 2022.

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Charlotte Hathway

Charlotte is the editor of Comms Business and writes about the latest technology innovations and business developments across the Channel. Got a story? Get in touch – charlotte.hathway@markallengroup.com.

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