ORIENT and ORIENTplus projects

Building on EU-funded projects

Between 2011 and 2014, the ORIENTplus project connected the research and education (R&E) communities of Europe and China, providing the highest capacity connection and shortest network path between the two regions and underpinning a wide range of data-intensive Sino-European scientific and academic collaborations, including participation in the LHC experiments, the ITER fusion project, radio-astronomy, severe-weather forecasting, agriculture, astrophysics and e-learning initiatives.

In 2013 link capacity quadrupled from 2.5Gbps of the predecessor ORIENT project (2007-2011) to 10Gbps to keep pace with increased user demand.

ORIENTplus was a joint project of CERNET (China Education and Research Network), CSTNET (China Science and Technology Network) and nine European NRENs – BASNET (BY), CESNET (CZ), DFN (DE), e-ARENA (RU), Consortium GARR (IT), GRNet (GR), Janet (UK), NORDUnet (DK, FI, IS, NO, SE) and PSNC (PL) – and was co-ordinated by research networking organisation GÉANT. The project was jointly funded by European Union’s FP7 programme, the Chinese government and the European and Chinese NRENs.

The project completed at the end of 2014, and its Final Review for the European Commission confirmed that the project had successfully met its objectives.

Seamless continuation of connectivity

Since December 2014 dedicated EU-China connectivity has continued to be provided, jointly funded by GÉANT and the Chinese NREN CERNET. The ORIENTplus project connectivity was replaced in July 2015 by a new 10Gbps link between Beijing and London. A long-term collaboration agreement between GÉANT and CERNET was signed in September 2015 as part of a programme to continue to support the growing R&E collaborations between Europe and China.

To recognise the achievements of the ORIENTplus project, the partners agreed to build on its strong brand which will be retained for continued joint activities in the context of the new EU-China link.