Welcome to ESnet6

ESnet6 is the sixth generation of the Energy Sciences Network

photo of industrial hallway with pipes

ESnet facilitates real-time scientific studies between the Linac Coherent Light Source at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (pictured) and supercomputing resources at Berkeley Lab’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Sciences Network (ESnet) user facility is the fastest network dedicated to science. This multi-100Gbps fiber optic backbone stretches across the country and beyond, interconnecting the DOE’s national laboratory system and experimental facilities with research and commercial networks around the globe.

This high-speed interconnectivity enables tens of thousands of scientists to access data portals, transfer vast research data streams, and tap into remote instruments and sources — all in real time.

aerial image of hurricane

Studying specific weather-related phenomena, including the behavior of devastating storms that impact specific regions, requires access to high-quality datasets from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. ESnet facilitates these data transfers for researchers across the DOE national laboratory complex.

But the scientific community is facing a growing challenge: dramatically increasing data volumes.

Telescopes are scanning the universe with greater precision. 

Supercomputers are simulating scientific phenomena at higher resolutions. Sensors and detectors are gathering experimental results with greater sensitivity and speed.

photo of observatory

ESnet helps scientists manage, analyze, and exchange large data sets generated by supercomputers, large-scale research collaborations, and experimental facilities, such as the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument being installed at the Mayall Telescope in Arizona.

ESnet’s next-generation network, ESnet6, is designed to help the DOE research community navigate this “data deluge” by giving them more bandwidth, greater flexibility, and faster data transfer capabilities.

With a projected early finish in 2023, ESnet6 will feature an entirely new software-driven network design that enhances the ability to rapidly invent, test, and deploy new innovations. The design includes

  • State-of-the-art optical, core and service edge equipment deployed on ESnet’s dedicated fiber optic cable backbone
  • A scalable switching core architecture coupled with a programmable services edge to facilitate high-speed data movement
APS esnet

ESnet is working with the General Medical Sciences and Cancer Institutes Structural Biology Facility at the Advanced Photon Source (APS, pictured) to streamline and improve data movement activities for users of the APS beamlines.

  • 100–400Gbps optical channels, with up to eight times the potential capacity compared to ESnet5
  • Services that monitor and measure the network 24/7/365 to ensure it is operating at peak performance, and
  • Advanced cybersecurity capabilities to protect the network, assist its connected sites, and defend its devices in the event of a cyberattack.

ESnet6 represents a transformational change in network capacity, resiliency, and flexibility that will bring tangible benefits to the DOE mission, including exascale. As the top science data network in the world, ESnet will continue supporting effective collaborations and consistent access to data, computing, and experiments, thus contributing significantly to U.S. competitiveness.

Project Status

ESnet6 is being managed as a DOE 413.3B process and has achieved CD 1/3A. In December 2019, the project had a successful CD 2/3 review and the team is preparing for implementation.