In a meeting this Thursday (9th), the minister for Science, Technology and Innovation, Aldo Rebelo, and the general manager of the Brazilian Teaching and Research Network (Rede Nacional de Ensino e Pesquisa - RNP), Nelson Simões, discussed the advancement of high-speed Internet and the need to expand the Ipê network, an infrastructure dedicated to the Brazilian higher education and research community, which interconnects universities and their hospitals, research institutes and cultural institutions. The secretary for IT Policies of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MCTI), Virgilio Almeida, attended the hearing.
Simões informed that the scope of service of the Ipê network has already surpassed the goal set in 2012, at the Brazilian Strategy of Science, Technology and Innovation (Encti). The document set forth that the service was to encompass 900 campuses by the end of 2015. Last December, the service reached the milestone of 980 units included. The service provides speeds of 100 megabits per second and 1 gigabit per second.
According to RNP’s director general, the provision of high-speed Internet is forecast to be expanded during 2015. "We still need to include about 300 campuses all over the country, 29 of which are within the Amazon region, where there are technical difficulties to make the high-speed connection by land or even satellite."
The Brazilian Army, RNP, the government of the State of Amazonas and Brazilian company Padtec are carrying out research to be able to take the network to the campuses in the Amazon. “We are testing a solution to keep the optical fiber cables submerged in the rivers, causing the Internet to reach the institutions. We will take an important step to solve the region’s isolation problem”, he opines.
The network currently serves 1,219 institutions in the country, 980 of which are interconnected in high speed. There are approximately 3.5 million users enjoying an advanced infrastructure for communication, computing and experimentation, which contributes to the integration between the science and technology system, higher education, health and culture.
Qualified as a social organization, the Brazilian Teaching and Research Network (Rede Nacional de Ensino e Pesquisa - RNP) is overseen by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MCTI), responsible for the RNP Inter-ministry Program, which relies on the participation of the Ministries of Education (MEC), Health (MS) and Culture (MinC). A pioneer in Internet access in Brazil, RNP plans and maintains the Ipê network.
Picture: Brazilian Army