iwire-gen.jpg (110786 bytes) The State of Illinois I-WIRE Project

Illinois Wired/Wireless Infrastructure for Research and Education (I-WIRE)

I-WIRE is a dark fiber communications infrastructure interconnecting Argonne National Laboratory, the University of Illinois (Chicago and Urbana campuses, including the National Center for Supercomputing Applications- NCSA and the Electronic Visualization Laboratory- EVL), the University of Chicago, Illinois Institute of Technology, Northwestern University, the Illinois Century Network Chicago hub, and a several collocation facilities in Chicago.

Using a dedicated dark fiber plant and Ciena DWDM transport equipment, I-WIRE currently provides point-to-point lambda services between I-WIRE sites.  Each I-WIRE site has a minimum of one OC-48 (2.5 Gb/s) lambda providing connectivity to Starlight.  Projects using I-WIRE as of 2003 include the NSF-funded TeraGrid, OptiPuter, DOT and Teraport projects. The TeraGrid project, for example, uses I-WIRE to provide 30 Gb/s (3 x OC-192) connections between Starlight, Argonne and NCSA.

I-WIRE Dark Fiber Topology

Since early 2002 the I-WIRE fiber plant has been in place as shown in the figure below.  I-WIRE fiber has been obtained via 20 year IRU agreements with multiple carriers.  Additional funding, appropriated in 2003, will be used to extend I-WIRE fiber to additional locations (targeting Peoria and Decatur) and to augment the Chicago metro plant to add redundancy and potentially coverage of additional commercial collocation points.

I-WIRE-fiber-topo.jpg (41180 bytes)

Planned Transport Topology and Status 12/2004

Installation of the linear segments was completed early June 2002.  Installation of the metro ring was completed in Aug 2003.

I-WIRE-DWDM-topo.jpg (50967 bytes)

Starlight and Other Related Projects

EVL, ANL and Northwestern leveraged I-WIRE fiber to create Starlight, a follow-on to StarTAP, hosted at Northwestern University's Chicago campus (Abbott Hall, 710 N. Lake Shore Drive).  Most of the major backbone networks in North America peer at Starlight including Abilene, ESnet, CANARIE's CA*Net project as well as other international networks such as SURFnet and its Gigaport project in the Netherlands.

Contacts: Charlie Catlett (catlett@mcs.anl.gov), Linda Winkler (winkler@mcs.anl.gov) .

Last updated Dec 2004

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