CENIC 2019 Conference Successfully Highlighted the Latest Advances in High-Speed Broadband Technology

March 21, 2019 / By Melissa Lucas and Katie E. Ismael

CENIC 2019 Conference Successfully Highlighted the Latest Advances in High-Speed Broadband Technology

Special presentations at Calit2 UC San Diego campus demonstrated applications of big data imaging used to study coral reefs, monitor and predict wildfire behavior, and preserve archaeological sites

Calit2 Professor for Visualization and Virtual Reality Falko Kuester shows the 70-screen SunCAVE to visitors from the CENIC conference.  

La Mirada, CA & San Diego, CA -- March 21, 2019 -- CENIC’s annual three-day conference brought together more than 400 people from the research, education, and technology communities to share successes that have come from leveraging CENIC’s California Research and Education Network (CalREN). The conference featured 46 sessions with 98 presenters, and was held in La Jolla, co-located at the Estancia Hotel and in Atkinson Hall, the UC San Diego home of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology's (Calit2) Qualcomm Institute.

Conference attendees learned about innovative uses of the CENIC network to support diverse California research and education projects; state-of-the-art and future network technologies; wireless technologies that extend CENIC’s network reach; cybersecurity and cyberinfrastructure; transformations in K-12 education and public libraries; broadband public policy; and new global collaborations supported by an interconnected research and education world. Many conference sessions were recorded, and these videos will soon be available on the CENIC YouTube channel to watch and share with others.

“Key leaders and visionaries were able to engage with each other’s work and ask questions on everything from emerging network technologies to new strategies for ensuring all Californians have access to high-speed broadband,” said CENIC President and CEO Louis Fox. “Conference participants were exposed to new ideas that they’re able to take back to their communities and put into action.”

Ilkay Altintas, director of WIFIRE, discusses wildfire mapping technology in the VRoom.

Three technology demonstrations at the Qualcomm Institute, the UC San Diego home of Calit2, created an immersive high point of the conference. The 70-screen SunCAVE, the world’s highest resolution 3D walk-in virtual reality system displayed gorgeous coral reef seascapes at 500-megapixel resolution. The 64-megapixel VROOM screen by WIFIRE scientists walked attendees through data collected and computed on wildfire containment missions. The DroneLab showed how drone computational photography, videography, and cinematography contribute to beautiful 3D reconstructions in virtual reality and in 3D prints of landscapes, architecture, and archeology sites.

"Calit2 addresses large-scale societal issues by bringing together multidisciplinary teams of the best minds,” said Larry Smarr, founding director of Calit2 and principal investigator of the Pacific Research Platform. “CENIC’s network enables the projects and technologies that were showcased at the conference. CENIC is the best regional optical network in the world, but as a technology it is virtually invisible to its millions of users because of how well it is engineered and operated.”

Larry Smarr, director of Calit2, gives a presentation to CENIC 2019 attendees.

The CENIC Innovations in Networking Awards are given annually to highlight exemplary people, projects, and organizations that leverage high-bandwidth networking. Seven awards were given to notable projects this year, including immediate and effective responses to wildfire emergencies, revolutionary fiber optic deployment for underwater ocean observation, and innovative technology that has transformed K-12 education.  

CENIC thanks all the speakers and participants for their dynamic contributions to the engaging presentations, conversations, and live demonstrations of immersive technology. The conference could not have been possible without the generous support of our sponsors. Titanium sponsors this year were AT&T and Juniper Networks. Platinum sponsors were Akamai, Amazon Web Services, GeoLinks, and World Wide Technology. Gold sponsors were AMS.NET, Arista, Aruba, Carahsoft, CenturyLink, Cisco, Comcast, Crown Castle, Ekinops, KIS, NCast, Ruckus, Spectrum, Telia Carrier, and Zscaler.

CENIC 2020 will be held in Monterey, California, at the Hyatt Regency in March 16-18, 2020. Registration will open in December. If you have a concept for a conference presentation, watch for the call for proposals in October.


About CENIC • www.cenic.org

CENIC connects California to the world — advancing education and research statewide by providing the world-class network essential for innovation, collaboration, and economic growth. This nonprofit organization operates the California Research and Education Network (CalREN), a high-capacity network designed to meet the unique requirements of over 20 million users, including the vast majority of K-20 students together with educators, researchers, and others at vital public-serving institutions. CENIC’s Charter Associates are part of the world’s largest education system; they include the California K-12 system, California Community Colleges, the California State University system, California’s Public Libraries, the University of California system, Stanford, Caltech, USC, and the Naval Postgraduate School. CENIC also provides connectivity to leading-edge institutions and industry research organizations around the world, serving the public as a catalyst for a vibrant California. For more information, visit www.cenic.org.



Melissa Lucas, 714-220-3405

Calit2/Qualcomm Institute

Alicia Clarke, 858-822-5825


Dominique Meyer, a Ph.D. student, displays drones in the DroneLab. 
A CENIC guest gets a look at a virtual reality system developed at the Qualcomm Institute. 
Larry Smarr talks with the San Diego NRP affiliate KPBS for a story on the demonstrations at the Qualcomm Institute. 



Related Links

View KPBS/San Diego NPR News Story

Media Contacts

Alicia Clarke
(858) 822-5825