A major research university with an annual budget of over $2B and more than $350 million in research grants, Northwestern is seeking to optimize communication not only between its two campuses, but also across the country and around the world. "Our bandwidth demands between our two campuses were escalating so rapidly that it became difficult to control our budget as we continued to 'pay by the pound' for bandwidth," explains Dr. Morteza A. Rahimi, Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Northwestern University. "The very nature of high-level research requires that faculty and researchers have unlimited freedom to explore data in minute detail and exchange information from the farthest reaches of the globe. We need a solution that will not place any restrictions on the important work our research teams are doing."
In addition to research, Northwestern Voice over IP and IP video initiatives continue to demand greater bandwidth and require constant availability. The Sunesys fiber optic solution allows Northwestern to have unlimited redundant bandwidth at a fixed cost and upgrade its own electronics as needed. "We felt it was important to have a network that was exclusively ours—with separate routes and separate landings on both campuses--so a single failure would cause no disruption of services," notes Dr. Rahimi.
Sunesys, LLC, a Warrington, PA dark fiber provider, recently announced a 20-year partnership with Northwestern University to build and support a fully redundant fiber optic ring interconnecting the University's suburban Evanston campus and its downtown Chicago campus networks at multiple locations. The intersection point will be the world-renowned StarLight facility, an advanced international network exchange funded by the National Science Foundation and located on Northwestern's downtown Chicago campus.
Dr. Rahimi explains that "Northwestern found Sunesys attractive because Sunesys enjoyed a reputation with its customers for maintenance services after cable is installed. It seems that Sunesys is always there to support its customers, maintaining the network and partnering with them as they move forward."
John Versaggi, Director of Sales for Sunesys, looks forward to a lasting partnership with Northwestern University and states that, "this is just the beginning of a strong presence for Sunesys in the Chicago metropolitan area." Sunesys, LLC is a leading dark fiber provider with assets in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois, California, Georgia, Florida, Ohio, Maryland and Delaware. It is a subsidiary of Quanta Services, a leading specialized contracting services company, delivering infrastructure network solutions for the electric power, natural gas, telecommunications and cable television industries. Quanta Services has operations in all 50 states and Canada.