Research network engineering (RNE) community group

A community for sharing best practices in building network infrastructures to support cutting edge research.

A woman smiling at her laptop.

Facilitated by Jisc

Open to staff from Janet-connected sites involved in network operations or in communities conducting data-intensive science

Monthly meetings via Zoom

About the community

Researchers at Janet-connected sites often have challenging network requirements. One notable case is an ever-increasing need for them to move large volumes of data to other organisations on the Janet Network or beyond.

The systems and network engineering knowledge required to design, build and operate effective platforms for such data transfers is not insignificant.

The broad aim of the RNE community is to discuss and share best practices in research networking, bringing together those with experience in the area with those who may be new to the subject, along with engineers and performance specialists from Jisc.

Topics might include examples of Science DMZ implementations, how to gather network performance measurements, and comparisons of software transfer tools. Ultimately, we hope to enable all Jisc members to make optimal use of their Janet connection to support their research requirements.

Aims of the community

Our aims are to:

  • Present and discuss examples of network engineering practices in support of research
  • Discuss the tools, software and concepts behind Science DMZ principles
  • Arrange and report on data transfer tests in varying scenarios
  • Explore new technical solutions
  • Foster collaboration between communities, within Janet and internationally

These aims will be discussed and updated at the group's first meeting. The RNE community will meet on a regular, monthly basis to allow members to share and discuss ideas, best practices and any issues they face.

Who should join

The community is open to:

  • Network managers
  • Campus network engineers
  • Campus IT staff supporting data intensive research
  • Members of research communities seeking to share large volumes of data

No prior experience in the area is assumed.

Join the community group

To get involved, submit the research network engineering community registration request form.

Next community call

The Square Kilometre Array Observatory (SKAO) and the SRCNet

Date and time: Friday 21 June 2024 at 2pm (UK)

We will hear from Ian Collier from STFC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory about the Square Kilometre Array Observatory (SKAO) and SRCNet.

Please register in advance.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.


The SKAO is a next-generation radio astronomy-driven Big Data facility that will revolutionise our understanding of the Universe and the laws of fundamental physics. It will have two radio telescopes, the SKA-Low telescope in Australia and SKA-Mid in South Africa. The SKA-Low telescope has begun to take shape in Western Australia with the installation of the first antennas on site in March, marking a major construction milestone for the SKAO.

The SKAO will build up, through a series of stages, to generating around 700 PB of data per year and functionality to find, assess, manipulate and visualise SKA Data products needs to be made available to a global user community on shared computational resources. To achieve this, the Observatory will be supported by a global network of SKA Regional Centres, or SRCs, distributed around the world in its member states. The SRCs will provide access to data products, platforms for advanced scientific analysis, and user support and training for astronomers using data generated by the SKA telescopes. The functionality and capacity of resources offered in the global SRCNet collaboration will develop in readiness for full SKA Operations.

Past event resources

For access to past slide decks and meeting recordings please join the Teams community.

By request: If you would like a copy of any materials used at any of our RNE community calls, please email Tim Chown (

Find out more

If you have any questions about the community please email the community facilitators at

To hear about RNE community news and events, or to discuss ideas or challenges you may have with other members of the community, sign up to the JiscMail list.