Moving research data on a global scale

The International Network Completed Resiliency project has been a testament to the collaborative nature of the global NREN community.

In December 2020, work was completed to strengthen the international network with additional capacity and completed resiliency.

Working closely with Hawaiki and NREN partners (University of Hawai'i and the University of Guam), REANNZ engineers and remote teams in both locations were able to implement a resilient solution. Completion of the project has been a testament to the collaborative nature of the global NREN (National Research and Education Network) community.

REANNZ’s key purpose is enabling New Zealand’s research institutions to use and participate in international research collaboration. Increasing REANNZ’s presence and networking capabilities within the international NREN community removes the barriers to international data mobility. With access to large data transfer capabilities and network tools that encourage multi-institutional collaboration, New Zealand’s researchers have access to the world’s unique science facilities, instruments and research projects. REANNZ and its members are closer to developing more collaborative relationships with NREN partners and their users.

The key design principles behind the project were to scale bandwidth and availability to meet the current and future needs of our members, ensure that the International Network is fault tolerant and expand the reach of REANNZ’s Research and Education connectivity. The foundation of REANNZ’s international network is the Hawaiki subsea cable system and other cable partners that provide REANNZ with connectivity to the US, Australia, Hawaii and Guam.

What makes up the international network?

  • Physical links to other countries via subsea cable systems,

  • peering with other network operators that provide direct access for traffic to them and their users,

  • dedicated links with large content providers,

  • research and education peering which provides direct access to the other research networks around the globe, and IP transit.

REANNZ now has 50Gbps of capacity to both Australia and the US via Hawaiki. REANNZ’s second Sydney PoP has been commissioned to provide 50Gbps of resilient connectivity back to New Zealand. An interim solution has been replaced for our connectivity between Sydney and Seattle. The US site includes connectivity to the high-speed, purpose-built PacificWave NREN fabric that provides connectivity to the other NRENs across Europe, the United States, Asia, South America and Africa. The additional PoP locations of Hawaii and Guam have now completed a resilient ring of connectivity and initial testing into Asia has shown significant latency improvements.

Typical round-trip time between:

  • Auckland - Sydney = 27ms to 34ms depending on the path (two separate subsea cable paths to Sydney)

  • Auckland - Seattle = 131ms

  • Auckland - Hawaii = 83ms

  • Auckland - Guam = 104ms

  • 134 milliseconds – time taken by light to travel around the Earth's equator.

Guam is connected to Sydney at 20Gbps capacity. To connect Hawaii and Guam, the University of Hawai'i have provided access to their 100Gbps connectivity, which is funded as a part of the Pacific Island Research Education Network (PIREN) initiative.

The University of Guam’s team were instrumental in the physical equipment install, in first taking the initial delivery of the various shipments including Juniper gear, optics and cables, then completing the install within the new GNC Data Centre. The install went smoothly and was completed to an excellent standard.

REANNZ engineers are currently exploring options with the University of Hawai'i to provide resilient connectivity back to Internet2 (the US NREN) giving the network the added benefit of resilient NREN connectivity. REANNZ have also provided the university with a backup path for NREN connectivity as a way of supporting and enabling simplified connectivity for each partner and their users.

Guam is a landing point for multiple subsea cable systems and hosts the GOREX (Guam Open Research & Education Exchange) that offers a rich array of NREN connectivity and services, especially into Asia. Supporting systems like the GOREX peering exchange allows for traffic to easily transverse partnering networks to reach its global destination.

The completion of this work is a step towards ensuring that the REANNZ network remains fit for purpose and able to meet the future needs of our members. As New Zealand’s National Research and Education network (NREN), REANNZ is a member of a global community with a shared mission to support and enable international research collaboration. Through the network, REANNZ members have direct access to this community of innovative people and research organisations, as well as the technologies and tools supported by NRENs around the world.

Case Studies
Find more examples of how REANNZ members use our network and services.



Find anything about our products, services, and more. Enter a query in the search input above.