21 January 2015 marks an official launch of the Baltic Highway, a modern data transmission network, connecting Tallinn (Estonia) and Frankfurt (Germany) via Riga (Latvia), Vilnius (Lithuania), Warsaw (Poland) and Berlin (Germany). The 3,000km optical fiber network is distinguished for its reliability, low 35 milliseconds latency, capacity of 100G per channel and 9.6 Tbit/s total throughput.
Duomenų perdavimo magistralė "Baltic Highway"
© Projekto plėtotojų iliustr.

The Baltic Highway project was implemented by three partners – Data Logistics Center (Lithuania), Latvenergo (Latvia) and Televõrk (Estonia). The data network development lasted for more than five years and involved investment of more than €1.5m.

Baltic Highway is the first and the only seamless (i.e., not made up of different segments of operator networks) network which uses the infrastructure of a single manufacturer. Moreover, it is the shortest span data highway connecting Eastern and Western Europe and providing the possibility to reach Saint Petersburg (Russia) via 100G and Belarus via 10G connections.

“This network is highly relevant to big data operators as well as finance institutions and banks, which consider fast data exchange important. It is important to the mega data centers of Microsoft, Google, and Yandex, established in Finland – up to this day they used to employ the 10G data transfer networks. Baltic Highway is like a freeway to Frankfurt, only without crossings and border control”, Juozas Rumbutis, the Head of the Sales Department of Data Logistics Center, says.

Participation in this project will allow Lithuania to establish itself as a data logistics hub, connecting the Baltic countries with Central and Eastern Europe. According to Justinas Pagirys, director of the Investment Development Department of Invest Lithuania, although Lithuania is famous for its well-developed fibre optic broadband infrastructure within the country, international data transfer capacity and rate indicators are not sufficiently competitive.

“Invest Lithuania is working to attract companies in the financial, information technology and telecommunications, and game development sectors. For foreign investors in these fields, the international data transfer rate is a very important criterion when choosing a location for investment, because their parent companies or clients are located abroad. Prior to the implementation of the Baltic Highway project, Lithuania was unable to ensure flexibility in fibre rent, the right conditions for data transfer services or high-speed data transfer. This project will undoubtedly increase Lithuania’s competitiveness and is likely to generate high added value investment for data centre projects in the future,” Mr. Pagirys says.

Baltic Highway uses optic fiber which is laid in the infrastructure managed by the energy companies, that is, on high voltage lines and gas pipelines.

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