Big Data, Big Network: Mexico-US Cross-Border Research Workshop at CICESE in Ensenada, Baja California
In 2010, the NSF International Research Networks Connections (IRNC) program funded Florida International University's Americas Lightpaths (AmLight) proposal, which included upgrading the network connection between Los Angeles, San Diego, and Tijuana to 10Gbps. In collaboration with CONACYT, CUDI, and other institutions in Mexico, funds were allocated to extend connectivity from Tijuana to Ensenada to connect CICESE at 10Gbps. The project enabled improvements in the last mile to benefit not only CICESE and collaborators located at the California Institute of Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2) but also the local campuses of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and the Autonomous University of Baja California (UABC) which, at the time, were expecting to be connected at this speed. The first light transmitted through the optical link from Calit2 to Tijuana and CICESE occurred in early March 2012. "This link represents a new way of doing science, because it creates new networks of collaboration between researchers and students that will let them devise solutions to problems that affect our lives as a nation and for humanity at large," said Federico Graef Ziehl, CICESE's Director General.
The science research and education communities in the U.S. and Mexico have a long history of collaborating on cross border projects, and researchers on both sides of the border are eager to stimulate more use of the AmLight West link to create new networks of collaboration. To this end, FIU's Julio Ibarra and and Calit2 Director Larry Smarr met at the GLIF 2012 meeting in Chicago and discussed ways in which this might be achieved, setting on convening a group of stakeholders at the CENIC Annual conference on March 12, 2013. The meeting was well-attended with representatives from UCSD/Calit2, CUDI, AmLight, Mexican multimedia company Televisa, CICESE, and CENIC.
The outcome of the meeting was a recommendation to organize a multinational Big Data, Big Network workshop to explore how to enhance existing and form new cross-border networks of collaboration between researchers and students connected by the AmLight West 10G link. This workshop was held October 10-11, 2013 at CICESE in Ensenada, Baja California. Areas of focus included Science Gateways, Life Sciences, Seismography, Digital Media, Geodata, and Space and Materials Sciences. Given their proximity to Mexico, California-based researchers were of course well-represented north of the border, but presentations and projects ranged throughout the US and the world. Presentations highlighted existing cross-border collaborations as well as the potential for such collaborations to expand and stimulate others, describing actionable objectives, anticipated challenges to and tangible results of such expansions, and the cyberinfrastructure requirements needed for research institutions to create such collaborations.
A follow-up workshop to take place in February at Calit2@UC San Diego is currently in the planning stages, and readers of CENIC Update will be kept informed as to the results of this series of workshops.
About CENIC - www.cenic.org
[ back to top ]
About CENIC and How to Change Your Subscription:
California's education and research communities leverage their networking resources under CENIC, the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California, in order to obtain cost-effective, high-bandwidth networking to support their missions and answer the needs of their faculty, staff, and students. CENIC designs, implements, and operates CalREN, the California Research and Education Network, a high-bandwidth, high-capacity Internet network specially designed to meet the unique requirements of these communities, and to which the vast majority of the state's K-20 educational institutions are connected. In order to facilitate collaboration in education and research, CENIC also provides connectivity to non-California institutions and industry research organizations with which CENIC's Associate researchers and educators are engaged.
CENIC is governed by its member institutions. Representatives from these institutions also donate expertise through their participation in various committees designed to ensure that CENIC is managed effectively and efficiently, and to support the continued evolution of the network as technology advances.
For more information, visit www.cenic.org.
Subscription Information: You can subscribe and unsubscribe to CENIC Updates at http://lists.cenic.org/mailman/listinfo/cenic-announce.