Fastest internet network in the world is upgraded to 46 Tb/s to support scientific research

To put it into perspective, ESnet6 is 46,000 times faster than a comparatively high-speed connection of one Gbps. The current U.S. national average internet speed in 2022 is 119.03 Mbps, according to High Speed Internet.

“ESnet6 represents a transformational change in the way networks are built for research, with improved capacity, resiliency, and flexibility,” ESnet executive director Inder Monga said in a press release. “Together, these new capabilities make it faster, easier, and more efficient for scientists around the world to conduct and collaborate on ground-breaking research.”

ESnet was established in 1986, and over the past 35 years, the network has served as the “data circulatory system” for the DOE from the Berkeley Lab. It connects all of its national laboratories, DOE-funded researchers, and DOE’s top-tier scientific instruments and supercomputing centers. Access to the ESnet has played a primary role in accelerating scientific advancements.

ESnet6 can transfer data between 400 Gbps and 1 Tbps

The network has had several upgrades and transmitted 1.1 exabytes of data over the network in 2021. According to the statement, traffic on ESnet increases by a factor of 10 every four years. In 2021, ESnet carried over 1.1 exabytes of science data.

ESnet6 comprises of 15,000 miles (24,000 km) of fiber optic cables with network backbone links ranging from 400 Gigabit per second to 1 Terabit per second for “record-time data transfers.” The system will have advanced overall network security, services that can be customized through a new automation platform, and a future programmable API platform for scientists, as stated in the press release.

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