Over the past few months, a series of improvements have been made to the campus network to meet the growing demand for connectivity at UNLV.
WiFi was extended outdoors during the spring semester. Security upgrades for a more reliable network were completed before the new academic year. Now the internet speed is five times faster, thanks to a 100 gigabit upgrade.
Support for more people, internet-connected devices
Over the summer, the Office of Information Technology (OIT) replaced outdated network equipment with a new router, upgrading the network from 20 to 100 gigabits. OIT funded the router as part of an equipment replacement plan, working with the Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) to ensure the equipment was up to standard.
“NSHE already had the infrastructure for the 100 gigabit network,” said Eric Kepschull, principal network engineer for NSHE, which is the state’s educational internet service provider, connecting state institutions to the network for free. the state. “UNLV needed to refresh its equipment which was connected to the network. It made sense to upgrade internet speed at the same time.
The high-performance network allows people to connect to the Internet faster, and the increased capacity supports more devices and Internet activities for universities, research and university operations.
As Internet usage grows (Cisco reports there will be 5.9 billion Internet users worldwide by next year), UNLV is poised to accommodate the growth.
“Here at UNLV, everyone consumes information online for a variety of reasons, perhaps for streaming videos or in-depth research,” said Andrew Lilleg, senior network engineer for OIT. “Because broadband needs differ, network capabilities have been expanded to meet campus demands.”
Expand UNLV’s extensive research efforts
The 100 gigabit network is attracting the attention of the university’s research community. The upgrade is one of many projects that will help accelerate the groundbreaking work of the R1 institution, the highest status for a Carnegie-listed research institution.
“Researchers collect massive amounts of data, which requires a lot of bandwidth,” Lilleg said. “With the improved network speed and capacity, they can quickly process and share large datasets with peers at other institutions for their research projects.”
This year alone, the university received $11.3 million to advance neuroscience research, a $1.3 million grant for the discovery of new materials, and a $437,000 grant to study injuries and traffic-related deaths, and a student received a $20,000 scholarship to fund cancer research.
Expanding Connectivity Demands for Top Public Research University
Historically, traffic on the campus network has peaked at seven gigabits in a single semester, according to Lilleg. Now that UNLV has a 100 gigabit network, there is more room to scale connectivity based on demand.
“As new bandwidth-intensive applications or research projects start, the network can adapt to this without infrastructure changes or major investments,” Lilleg said.
The high-performance network is essential for UNLV, as it meets the growing data and connectivity needs of a diverse population on campus. Through it, the institution can continue to be a leading public research university that transforms the community.