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  5. Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe wins multi-million GBP contract to supply new long-distance optical fibre links for the e-MERLIN large-array radio astronomy project

Fujitsu Wins e-MERLIN Fibre Contract for Giant Radio Telescope

Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe wins multi-million GBP contract to supply new long-distance optical fibre links for the e-MERLIN large-array radio astronomy project

June 02, 2004

Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe Ltd, the leading supplier of high performance telecommunications solutions, announces that it has won a prestigious multi-million GBP contract, to supply long-distance optical fibre links for the University of Manchester's e-MERLIN project. This will connect the university's radio telescope at Jodrell Bank with five other radio telescopes around the UK, to form a single, large-array telescope - capable of achieving previously unattainable sensitivity for this type of high resolution array, and representing the first example of an array to be connected using a national multi-Gigabit fibre network.

Fujitsu's contribution to the project includes the trench-laying of some 90km of new fibre. This will link the remote telescope sites to a dark-fibre backbone and allow data from the telescopes to be collected at a rate of 150Gb per second - five times the average traffic of the entire UK Internet. It is this huge data rate that will give e-MERLIN its unprecedented sensitivity. Together with the high angular resolution provided by the 217km separation between the telescopes, it will have the capability of resolving radio images from the faintest, and most distant, galaxies and stellar bodies, as a result of increasing the sensitivity of the existing microwave-linked MERLIN network by a factor of more than 30.

Mr Shigeyuki Unagami, managing director of Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe Ltd, commented: "Fujitsu is very pleased to be playing a pivotal role in the University of Manchester's realisation of the e-MERLIN radio astronomy project. Establishing the essential fibre links, between the dark-fibre backbone and the individual telescopes, is an exciting contract for us - especially as it is contributing to such a significant scientific endeavour, helping to create one of the world's largest connected radio telescope arrays. The unique scope of Fujitsu's resources, in terms of technology and field services, proved to be an essential factor in winning this contract. Our team, under the leadership of Amrit Bajjon, has been involved with the detailed planning of the project for over twelve months - it has been quite an undertaking.

"Our company's philosophy, of recognising the infinite possibilities of customers' requirements and their solutions, is strongly epitomised by this project, which has as its goal a greater understanding of the universe itself. Key to the scientific potential is the fibre-networking requirement to move such a huge quantity of data so quickly, between the remote telescopes and Jodrell Bank. This successful harmony, of pioneering science, IT and telecommunications, will enable radio images to be resolved at far greater distances, and allow us to see further back in time to the very youngest galaxies. It is indeed a project with infinite possibilities. We wish the University of Manchester, and all the teams involved with e-MERLIN, the greatest success."

Simon Garrington of Jodrell Bank Observatory, e-MERLIN project manager, explained: "It would have been difficult for us to take e-MERLIN further forward without Fujitsu's willingness to deliver a timely solution that met our technical and financial criteria. The e-MERLIN project represents something of a scientific breakthrough - it will be the world's longest-baseline, permanently connected radio telescope array with this immense bandwidth, which is only achievable by deploying fibre to network the individual telescopes. The e-MERLIN network will perform, on a much larger scale, the equivalent function of Jodrell Bank's 76-metre Lovell Telescope. The Lovell's huge dish reflects radio waves to a focal point, whereas the new network will collect data from all the telescopes, and deliver the signals to the common focus of our data correlator."

About Fujitsu

Fujitsu is the leading Japanese information and communication technology (ICT) company offering a full range of technology products, solutions and services. Over 170,000 Fujitsu people support customers in more than 100 countries. We use our experience and the power of ICT to shape the future of society with our customers. Fujitsu Limited (TSE:6702) reported consolidated revenues of 4.5 trillion yen (US$54 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2012. For more information, please see:

Fujitsu UK and Ireland is a leading IT systems, services and products company employing 11,400 people with an annual revenue of £1.7 billion. Its business is in enabling its customers to realise their objectives by exploiting information technology through its integrated product and service portfolio. This includes consulting, applications, systems integration, managed services and product for customers in the private and public sectors including retail, financial services, telecoms, government, defence and consumer sectors. For more information, please see:

About Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe

Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe Limited is a major supplier of Broadband Access equipment in Europe and is Fujitsu's worldwide design location for access network solutions - including a centre of excellence for the development of Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) technology. The company is also the leading provider of broadband solutions in the UK, with some 2 million lines deployed to date. Headquartered in Birmingham, UK, Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe is focused on providing strategic end-to-end solutions, supported by complete turnkey services. Fujitsu is playing a fundamental role in the creation of "Broadband Britain" - from world-leading products and technology, through project planning, community liaison, cable laying and civil engineering, to installation, implementation and ongoing maintenance.

About e-MERLIN

The e-MERLIN radio astronomy project will upgrade the existing microwave links that network the 76-metre Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank with smaller dishes at Cambridge, Great Malvern, Pickmere and Darnhall in Cheshire, and near Oswestry in Shropshire. The project is being funded by The University of Manchester, the Northwest Development Agency, the Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC), UMIST and The University of Cambridge. The capital funding for the whole project is GBP 7.6M. MERLIN and e-MERLIN are operated by The University of Manchester on behalf of PPARC.

Debbie Glover

Address: Solihull Parkway Birmingham Business Park Birmingham United Kingdom B37 7YU

Phone: Phone: +44 (0)121 717 6033
Fax: +44 (0)121 717 6018
E-mail: E-mail:
Company:Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe Limited

Georgina Garrett/Simon Jones

Address: Harbour House 27 High Street Shoreham-by-Sea United Kingdom BN43 5DD

Phone: Phone: +44 (0)1273 441200
Fax: +44 (0)1273 441300
E-mail: E-mail:
Company:Garrett Axford

Dr Simon Garrington

Address: The University of Manchester Macclesfield Cheshire United Kingdom SK11 9DL

Phone: Phone: +44 (0)1477 572607
E-mail: E-mail:
Company:Jodrell Bank Observatory

Date: 02 June, 2004


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