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GÉANT and Mantychore partnership to enable faster creation of virtual infrastructures across Europe

by david.nunes

GÉANT and Mantychore partnership to enable faster creation of virtual infrastructures across Europe

Cloud, e-health, media, Grid and Green ICT projects already benefiting from close technical collaboration

Cambridge and Reykjavik, 18 May 2012, Researchers will find it easier to create their own virtualised networks, underpinning Cloud and Grid computing projects and speeding up international collaboration, thanks to new results obtained through the partnership between the pan-European GÉANT project and the EU-funded Mantychore project.

The Mantychore project has developed an open source framework (OpenNaaS) to provide the European virtual research community with the ability to create IP Networks as a Service (NaaS) over the infrastructures of European National Research and Education Networks (NRENs). This framework will also build a developers community for the creation of new and innovative services over OpenNaaS.

GÉANT’s new Bandwidth on Demand (BoD) service is now integrated with OpenNaaS in order to allow users to create and control their own and customised virtual networks across multiple domains. This addresses the needs of users in fields such as cloud, e-Health, media, and Grid Computing, enabling them to quickly access the network resources they need under a “pay as you grow” model. Moreover, OpenNaaS will offer the capability to take into consideration Green IT parameters when building the virtual infrastructures

The multi-domain service for automatic bandwidth provisioning, BoD enables NRENs to quickly provision dedicated high speed dynamic circuits between different network points within the GÉANT Service Area (GSA) across Europe.

“Experimental projects require increasing flexibility when they are creating Cloud and Grid-based infrastructures and this partnership between the GÉANT and Mantychore projects will make it easier and faster to create the virtualised environments that they need,” said Tangui Coulouarn, product manager for GÉANT Bandwidth on Demand. “This collaboration demonstrates how GÉANT is working closely with the European research ecosystem to provide the tools and innovation for users to move forward in their research.”

One of the first users of the combined solution is the GreenStar Network (GSN) project, which is researching new models for reducing greenhouse gas emissions within information and communication technologies (ICT). It has built a network of four international nodes within European datacentres, powered solely by renewable energy. Monitoring and control software, provided by Mantychore, distributes data processing and traffic loads in real time between these nodes through GÉANT Bandwidth on Demand, using a Cloud-based infrastructure to ensure the maximum amount of green energy is used at all times.

The collaboration between Mantychore and the GSN (Green Star Network) project, which is researching new models for reducing greenhouse gas emissions within information and communication technologies (ICT), has facilitated the development of functionalities in OpenNaaS to ensure that the maximum amount of green energy is used when creating Cloud network-based infrastructures. Mantychore has also built a test network with nodes connected to the Canada GSN network, powered solely by renewable energy, including a node on Iceland.

“The provisioning of virtual infrastructures, together with an open source framework (OpenNaaS) that allows the community to extend and customize the framework to their needs and services, will provide major benefits and represent a major uptake to the current demands from the virtual research communities and the telecom industry. It is a step forward towards the convergence of ICT,” said Sergi Figuerola, Mantychore project coordinator. “Mantychore, through OpenNaaS, aims to include GÉANT Bandwidth on Demand as an integral part of our project, making it simpler and faster to create virtual networks across Europe.”

Other Mantychore users include the University of Essex (projects for advanced high quality media services and marketplace modelling), Trinity College Dublin (grid and cloud infrastructure), UNI-C (who collaborates with the Danish Health Data Network), NORDUnet (OpenNaaS – AutoBAHN interoperability) and Irish NREN HEAnet (Virtual CPE).

In a virtual network, where the physical infrastructure is already in place, provisioning time can slow performance. Mantychore’s OpenNaaS software, led by the i2CAT Foundation, overcomes this by provisioning a complete, virtual network in two steps. First, it creates (and configures) logical routers in the locations chosen by the user; and secondly, it calls GÉANT Bandwidth on Demand to configure the layer 2 connections between them across multiple domains. OpenNaaS keeps a memory of the BoD endpoints that connect its infrastructure, and when a virtual link is needed, calls BoD to set it up.


GÉANT is the high speed European communication network dedicated to research and education. In combination with its NREN partners, GÉANT creates a secure, high-speed research infrastructure that serves 40 million researchers in over 8,000 institutions across 40 European countries. Building on the success of its predecessors, GÉANT has been created around the needs of users, providing flexible, end-to-end services that transform the way that researchers collaborate. GÉANT is at the heart of global research networking through wide ranging connections with other world regions, underpinning vital projects that bridge the digital divide and benefit society as a whole.

Co-funded by the European Commission under the EU’s 7th Research and Development Framework Programme, GÉANT is the e-Infrastructure at the heart of the EU’s European Research Area and contributes to the development of emerging Internet technologies. The project partners are 32 European National Research and Education Networks (NRENs), TERENA and DANTE. GÉANT is operated by DANTE on behalf of Europe’s NRENs. For more information, see www.geant.net

About Mantychore

Mantychore is a FP7 project to innovate the business model used for services based on Network as a Service. These services (e.g. IP and Ethernet) provided under the Network as a Service (NaaS) framework will simplify the operational management and enhance the service portfolio of the Research and Education networks. It aims to provide virtual research communities with a useful network service that adapt to their research activities and optimize the efficiency of use of e-Infrastructures. Mantychore expands on services of the privately funded MANTICORE II project with the NaaS based solutions for optical and Ethernet/MPLS networks; thus being able to provide integrated services at levels 1-3. It will also establish a marketplace where all Infrastructure Providers can announce their available resources and all customers can automatically negotiate the SLAs getting the best resources combination for their needs.

The Mantychore project is funded by the EU under FP7 and is co-ordinated by the i2CAT Foundation (Spain). The other project partners are: HEAnet (Ireland), NORDUnet (Nordic countries), University of Essex (UK), Trinity College Dublin (Ireland), UNI-C (Denmark) as users and Telefónica I+D (Spain) as commercial company.

The Mantychore project is funded by the EU under the FP7 and is co-ordinated by the i2CAT Foundation. The other project partners are HEAnet, the Irish NREN, Nordic NREN NORDUnet, Uni-C (Denmark), the University of Essex (UK) Trinity College Dublin (Ireland) as users and commercial carrier Telefónica I+D (Spain). http://www.mantychore.eu/

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