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The initiative involves multi-gigabit, high-speed communication network
It will be beneficial in the spheres of education, agriculture and health
CHENNAI: The rollout of the National Knowledge Network (NKN), a nationwide knowledge-sharing initiative involving multi-gigabit, high-speed communication network backbone, has linked up 15 universities in and around Chennai.
As a key partner in the project, BSNL with an infrastructure of over 60,000 km of optic fibre cables across south India, has completed providing last-mile connectivity to the 15 institutions. The 1Gbps (gigabits per second) links provided to these institutions by BSNL Chennai Telephones will soon be scaled up to double that bandwidth, an official said.
“The 155 Mbps Internet connectivity that was provided with the 1Gbps link to these institutions is capable of facilitating academic exchanges involving video lectures,” a BSNL official said.
As of February, the project has grown to have 31 Points of Presence (PoPs), 76 backbone links and 200 edge links, including locations in Chennai and elsewhere in the State.
While all the PoPs are in place, a completed picture of the NKN will have 89 backbone links and 1,500 edge links across India.
Apart from education, the NKN is expected to benefit spheres of agriculture, health, e-governance and grid computing.
R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, had stated recently in Chennai that the NKN was expected to be operational in two years when it would link up 1,500 institutions to the backbone. Currently, 500 premier institutions were linked to the NKN.
The first prioritised list of universities identified by the Ministry of Human Resources Development in Tamil Nadu include the B.S. Abdur Rehman University, Sathyabama University, Sri Ramachandra Medical College & Research Institute, Tamil Nadu Dr. Ambedkar Law University, Tamil Nadu Dr.M.G.R. Medical University, Tamil Nadu Veterinary and Animal Science University, TANUVAS, University of Madras, VEL Tech. Technical University Chennai, Bharathiar University, Tamilnadu Agriculture University and Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Viswa Mahavidyalaya. A few institutions on the list are yet to join the grid while premier institutions like the IIT-Madras are already in the NKN fold.
The NKN's backbone originates from 2.5 Gbps (gigabits per second) and progressively escalates to 10 Gbps connectivity between 7 Supercore (fully meshed) locations across India. The network is further spread out through core locations with multiple of 2.5 to10 Gbps.
The network architecture and governance structure allows users with options to connect to the distribution layer as well. Apart from its educational knowledge-sharing role, the NKN is seeing phased linking up of about 550 medical treatment and research institutions.
The NKN also provides international connectivity to facilitate global collaborative research by linking up to Trans Eurasia Information Network (TEIN3) and the GLORIAD network (a high speed computer network involving an international consortium of scientific organisations).
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