The Network

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HEAnet  connects over one million users to the Internet, linking them to each other and the rest of the world via our secure, high-capacity national education network.

The HEAnet  Network is made up of our “national backbone” using ESBT Fibre and the Dublin Core Ring – this is the basis for all HEAnet Connectivity Services.

Dark Fibre between the major cities and urban areas allows us to deliver national coverage, providing the same high quality Internet access to all our clients, regardless of their location on the island of Ireland.

The national backbone consists of over 2,500Km of fibre and interconnects all Higher Education Institutions in Ireland, as well as providing backhaul for over 4,000 primary & post-primary schools across the country.

More Information

For information on HEAnet services delivered across the network, please visit What We Do and if you are interested in seeing live traffic volumes, please visit


Backhaul is often used in telecommunications and refers to transmitting a signal from a remote site or network to another site, usually a central one. Backhaul usually implies a high-capacity line, meaning high-speed lines capable of transmitting high bandwidth at very fast speed.

Optical Network

An optical network  uses light signals instead of electronic ones to send information between two or more points. The points could be computers in an office, large urban centres or even countries in the global telecommunications system.

IP: Internet Protocol

A digital media transport system that runs over stand IP networks.

MPLS: Multi-Protocol Label Switching

is a mechanism for routing traffic within a telecommunications network, as data travels from one network node to the next.