With the increase of Internet traffic in institutions associated with the growth of digital content consumption, namely distance learning, FCT has reinforced the Science, Technology and Society Network (RCTS), which supports the Internet connections of the Portuguese education and research community.

As a response to the crisis we are experiencing, the Foundation for Science and Technology, through its unit FCCN, reinforced its infrastructure, RCTS, and began to develop two operations. The first was an upgrade in the access of the University of the Azores, the University of Madeira and the University of the Algarve, which led to a 344% increase in the rate of access to RCTS.

"On behalf of the University of the Azores and myself, I want to thank and praise all your work, dedication and commitment. Not only in this troubled time but always. You are a great help!" thanked Rui Medeiros, Director of the Information and Communication Technologies Service of the University of the Azores.

The second operation consisted of an upgrade of the RCTS connection to Gigapix to 100Gbps, with the objective of ensuring the quality of the academic network connection with the networks of the telecommunications operators and with the networks of the large content providers present in Gigapix, which increased the connection between the two infrastructures by 400%.

João Rodrigues, from the University of Algarve, also wanted to thank us, "on behalf of the Rectory, the academy and the Computer Services of UAlg, I hereby thank the availability and speed in which we were assigned the bandwidth of 10Gbit/s in this troubled phase of life for all of us, were fantastic.

Gilberto Freitas, from the University of Madeira, wanted to recognize the importance, "Since most of us are working remotely, often using VPN (Virtual Private Network) applications, before the circuit upgrade we were experiencing some daily cuts, even if they were short-lived, in this type of access, which caused some disruption to our work. With the upgrade of the circuit from the University of Madeira to RCTS, we now have connections from home to UMa without any interruption throughout the day. We are therefore very grateful to FCCN for the upgrade.".

RCTS intends to continue to strengthen the infrastructure through investments planned under the RCTS100 project, which is scheduled to end in September 2021. This project, co-funded by COMPETE 2020, Lisbon 2020 and Algarve 2020, aims to develop the national capacity for communication and computation of large volumes of data, as well as the extension of the RCTS fibre optic infrastructure to entities located in the north and south of the country, in order to eliminate the digital divide that still exists in the network.

About RCTS

RCTS - Science, Technology and Society Network - is the national research and education network, also internationally known as NREN(National Research and Education Network).

Managed and operated by the Unit FCCN, the unit of the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) responsible for national scientific computing, RCTS offers researchers, teachers and students a high-performance digital infrastructure that supports the projects they develop at national and international level.

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