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.

The “HEAnet Network” is made up of three distinct networks, or layers: Optical , IP (Internet Protocol) and MPLS (Multi-Protocol Label Switching) .  All HEAnet services are delivered on one or more of these network layers.

In order to provide a quality Internet experience to our HEAnet clients, it is essential to ensure that we have the appropriate capacity and quality connections to other telecoms providers, both nationally and internationally, in place.

In addition to providing connectivity to national and international Internet Service providers, we also connect directly to the European and UK Education and Research networks GÉANT and Jisc.  The GÉANT connection provides high quality International connections to all the Education and Research networks in Europe, US, China and many other research networks around the world.

Locally HEAnet connects to over 70 telecoms and Internet companies based in Ireland at the Irish Neutral Exchange (INEX) and the Cork Neutral Exchange (CIX). This enables HEAnet and Irish based telecoms to keep local traffic within Ireland and hence provide a better overall end user experience.

HEAnet also maintains direct connections to many local content providers such as Amazon, Google, Facebook and Microsoft here in Dublin.

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