High-Quality 10 Gbps Campus Network: The Foundation for Future Digital Education
Since the 1990s, education policies across the world turned their attention to education digitalization. New digital technologies have incredible potential to contribute to higher teaching quality. At the same time, digitalization can streamline educational resources beyond time and space, enabling schools, regions, and even countries to share knowledge. The increased access to quality resources has helped in bridging the persistent digital and educational divide.
Indeed, many countries have recognized the importance of educational digitalization and embarked on relevant projects. For example, the U.S. launched the National Educational Technology Plan, Australia initiated the Digital Education Revolution, and South Korea introduced the SMART — self-directed, motivated, adaptive, resource-enriched, and technology-embedded — strategy. Since 2022, China has also accelerated its educational digitalization.
The digital transformation of global education can be divided into three phases: basic informatization, digital campus, and future-oriented intelligent education.
In the first phase, countries deploy basic IT facilities and department applications.
In the second phase, schools are more concerned with people and services. They upgrade all necessary ICT facilities, such as wireless networks and supercomputing centers, to support rich online and offline teaching, campus management, and scientific research and analysis.
In phase three, schools begin to look toward future-oriented intelligent education. They are eager to use new technologies such as big data, cloud, and digital twins to transform teaching and campus management models across learning, administration, data governance, campus services, and decision-making. Currently, many smart applications are already emerging, such as online classes, Virtual Reality (VR) teaching, and smart labs.
Networks are at the core of digital campuses, serving as the foundation that connects physical and digital spaces. They bridge online and offline educational activities, in-class and out-of-class tasks, and real and virtual content.
However, intelligent education faces a series of network construction and O&M challenges. For example, the ever-upgrading smart classrooms keep changing indoor information points. In addition, the existing bandwidth is insufficient for VR terminals and 4K online classrooms. In high-density user scenarios, such as auditoriums and libraries, current Wi-Fi capability is insufficient for high-concurrency and smooth access, failing to assure important online classroom services.
Considering these challenges, how can we build, operate, and maintain a network that connects numerous teachers and students, terminals, teaching equipment, and scientific research facilities?
As education goes digital, high-quality network foundations are crucial for digital campuses. In light of this, Huawei has launched the High-Quality 10 Gbps CloudCampus Solution to keep up with the digital education trend. The solution features technological innovations in transmission media, architecture, experience, O&M, and security. It uses an Ethernet all-optical technology system, which provides a ubiquitous 10 Gbps experience for teachers and students.
The High-Quality 10 Gbps CloudCampus Solution stands out for six unique features:
• Feature 1: Ethernet all-optical deployment to room
The solution routes optical fibers into classrooms and dormitories while deploying Remote Units (RUs) indoors for expansion of 10 Gbps uplinks. This ensures sufficient indoor wired and wireless bandwidth and enables the expansion of indoor information points.
This new approach surpasses the weak transmission performance of traditional copper cables and prevents complex cabling. Ethernet network deployment is much more flexible, so the network architecture is simplified from three to two layers. Cables are routed once and do not need to be reconstructed for ten years. Plus, there is no need to configure or plan RUs, which are plug-and-play and work immediately after being powered on.
• Feature 2: Simplified and converged bearing
The VXLAN-based SDN virtualization network technology virtualizes the physical network into multiple Virtual Networks (VNs). These VNs can be dedicated to students, teachers, all-in-one access cards, security, and finance, respectively. All these VNs are centrally maintained by the information center.
Wireless Access Points (APs) — capable of Wi-Fi & Internet of Things (IoT) convergence — support multiple connection types, such as RFID, Bluetooth, and ZigBee. Finally, all functions can be flexibly loaded using IoT cards, meeting future IoT evolution requirements.
• Feature 3: Ultra-high-speed network access
Research shows that over 80% of terminals on campuses are wireless. At the same time, it's common to use online teaching, remote office, and online learning. As such, the solution deploys Wi-Fi APs that deliver full coverage, providing 10 Gbps wireless access anytime and anywhere.
• Feature 4: Ultimate experience assurance
The campus network uses technologies such as real-time traffic detection, AI application identification, and network slicing. These allow it to accurately identify key service traffic such as online classrooms, online exams, and real-time sports events. As a result, the network provides End-to-End (E2E) service traffic visualization and assurance, allowing users to enjoy the ultimate network experience with zero frame freezing for key services.
• Feature 5: Simplified and intelligent O&M
Huawei's solution offers intelligent O&M thanks to traffic collection, big data, and AI analysis technologies. Key capabilities include Wi-Fi signal optimization, service visualization, and network maintenance. The result is better network O&M and a lower workload for the information center.
• Feature 6: Integrated network security
Huawei's solution uses the real-time security upgrade detection and security services based on Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). As such, campus network security services are available on demand. Security defense is integrated across the network and security events are automatically handled from start to finish.
Huawei's High-Quality 10 Gbps CloudCampus Solution is based on the Ethernet all-optical technology system. The solution provides a comprehensive, high-quality experience in classrooms, dormitories, libraries, auditoriums, stadiums, labs, and scientific research buildings. It also enables a new education mode that supports more convenient learning, interactive classrooms, and education resource sharing.
• Smart classrooms with a simplified network, bridging physical and digital spaces
Smart Classroom 3.0 features about eight information points in each classroom, including a teaching PC, one to four high-density APs, two electronic whiteboards, one or two recording cameras, a console, an electronic class card, and other optional terminals.
In traditional classrooms, there is no switch. Instead, all information points are connected to the upper-layer devices at the Extra-Low Voltage (ELV) room of the building through copper cables, which is difficult to build and expensive to cable.
Instead, Huawei innovatively uses what we call an Ethernet all-optical "simplified architecture". An RU is deployed in each classroom to connect to all terminals, and all such RUs are then connected to the central switch in the ELV room of the building. This simplifies the complex three-layer architecture into a two-layer architecture. Plus, it takes just one week, instead of a month, to deploy the network.
Heilongjiang International University has already tried out Huawei's Ethernet all-optical "simplified architecture". It has built a simplified, flexible, and ultra-fast fully-wireless campus network. Optical fibers are routed into rooms. The result is 80% fewer wired managed nodes, 74% less cabling, and 30% lower energy consumption. The Ethernet technology enables flexible and convenient configuration, while indoor optical fibers deliver sufficient bandwidth for future evolution.
• Dormitories, auditoriums, and stadiums with fully-wireless access anytime, anywhere, offering the ultimate Internet access experience
In high-density wireless scenarios — such as dormitories, lecture halls, auditoriums, stadiums, and libraries — hundreds of people may access the network at the same time. Typically, the communication bandwidth of a Wi-Fi channel decreases significantly as it needs to support more users.
Huawei's next-generation Wi-Fi 6/7 APs use cutting-edge technologies, such as dynamic-zoom smart antennas and Coordinated Spatial Reuse (CoSR) multi-AP collaboration, to provide up to 10 Gbps wireless bandwidth. They offer a concurrency rate that is 50% higher than the industry average and 20% wider coverage range.
Sipailou and Dingjiaqiao campuses of the Southeast University in China have deployed Huawei's AirEngine Wi-Fi 6 solution. With industry-leading smart antennas, APs can deliver always-on signals for users like searchlights, ensuring Wi-Fi signal coverage without blind spots. Dormitories always enjoy full signal strength, doubling download rates.
• Libraries with cloud-based book counting
Libraries store millions of books. As a result, books are often misplaced, and librarians face countless hours of repetitive tasks. The smart book counting robot uses Huawei Wi-Fi 6 and built-in RFID IoT cards to scan and count book locations at all times. Then, the wireless network matches books and their designated shelves in real time, automatically identifies misplaced books, and displays their locations for more efficient library operations.
In the University Town of Shenzhen, Huawei's AirEngine Wi-Fi 6 solution enables roaming handover within 10 ms and near-lossless roaming. The result is a stable and reliable data transmission link that integrates wireless and IoT processes between books and counting robots. This effectively prevents packet loss, incorrect transmission, and retransmission between robots and the system background, exponentially improving book management and counting efficiency.
• Digital labs that connect "everything"
College/University labs are important sites for both national research and talent training. Currently, there are about 600,000 labs in China. Despite their importance, many labs have poor risk mitigation and security systems. Digital technologies can easily improve lab security management.
Huawei's IoT-capable Wi-Fi 6 APs and edge computing gateways enable full IoT sensing. They support multiple IoT protocols, such as ZigBee, Bluetooth, and RFID. This allows for convenient access by various lab terminals. It also supports the centralized acquisition, automatic collection, and backhaul of lab data, facilitating intelligent lab management.
In the Sunan Institute of Molecular Engineering of Peking University, this solution has enabled real-time risk awareness and emergency handling in seconds. It has also improved routine security management and reduced the risk of accidents, making security visible, manageable, and controllable.
• The ultimate experience during exams, sports events, and other activities
Campuses host everything from large-scale exams to important sports events. As such, key service assurance is a crucial task for campus network management. In these cases, the information center needs to identify key services and reduce the impact of non-key services, so they don't interfere with key services.
Huawei CloudEngine S8700 switches come with experience assurance cards, which ensure zero packet loss in video teaching for up to 10,000 students. In addition, the switches can preferentially guarantee important classroom and sports events, achieving zero packet loss and optimal application experience. At the same time, iMaster NCE enables intelligent O&M by using a digital map to display the status of all applications and user network journeys on campus. Faults can be located and demarcated in minutes, which improves the teaching experience and student satisfaction.
• Network information center with AI-powered intelligent O&M, visualizing user experience in real time
Network O&M accounts for a large proportion of the information center's workload. As the network continues to expand, so does the number of O&M-related tasks. On average, each "Project 211" university in China has thousands of wired switches, tens of thousands of wireless APs, hundreds of thousands of information points along with hundreds of networked buildings and hundreds of thousands of Internet access terminals and IoT terminals. Even so, there are only dozens of O&M personnel.
Minzu University of China uses Huawei's iMaster NCE, which features AI-powered intelligent O&M technologies. It analyzes campus networks, builds scenario-specific network optimization capabilities, intelligently identifies wireless coverage scenarios, and performs automatic optimization. This solution has been deployed on the Fengtai campus of this university and provides network assurance for more than 10,000 teachers and students. In the past six months, no student has reported any fault, the download speed in dormitories has tripled, and there is no frame freezing when students stream online Blu-ray videos.
• Research buildings with SaaS-based Qiankun Security CloudService, protecting every scientific research achievement
Scientific research buildings face significant network security risks because they use various types of terminals, rich application systems, and complex and diversified service access. A network attack can lead to data leakage, viruses, and even network failures. In response, Huawei provides the SaaS-based Qiankun Security CloudService solution to help protect campus scientific research achievements.
In Anhui University, China, more than 50,000 terminals are connected to the network. Compared with traditional tools, Huawei Qiankun Security CloudService has quadrupled the vulnerability identification rate, more than tripled the attack detection rate, and nearly doubled the automatic handling rate. The solution updates threat information in real time. It also accurately analyzes network security threats and automatically blocks attack sources, defending against attacks and reducing the burden on O&M personnel.
Huawei has built a high-quality 10 Gbps campus network based on the Ethernet all-optical technology system. The network provides capabilities such as Ethernet all-optical deployment to room, simplified converged bearer, ultra-high-speed network access, ultimate experience assurance, simplified and intelligent O&M, and integrated network security. These features streamline digital campus connections and bring smart campus construction to a new level.
Huawei's High-Quality 10 Gbps CloudCampus Solution has been deployed in more than 100 countries and regions, including more than 30 QS Top 100 universities worldwide and nine C9 universities and over 130 Double First-Class universities in China. All of them have chosen Huawei Datacom as their digital transformation partner.
Huawei is committed to becoming a key contributor to education informatization infrastructure. By integrating technologies with education scenarios, Huawei stands ready to provide a high-quality network foundation for the digital transformation of the education industry.