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LEARN: Lonestar Education and Research Network

In 2004, LEARN was created when Texas research institutions and health science centers reached a consensus on a shared vision that it was strategically important to create an organization dedicated to high performance networking in Texas. 

LEARN was enabled by the Texas Legislature via SB1771 in Legislative Session 78, House Bill 7, and supported by the Governor, Lt. Governor, and Speaker of the House, to help build a high speed, advanced fiber optic network for research, education, healthcare, and their non-profit partners to serve the State of Texas.

In the years since, LEARN has become a vital and trusted partner empowering its members to execute their missions through technology and collaboration.

LEARN's Vision: LEARN will be the most efficient and effective enabler of research, education, healthcare, and public service communities in Texas using technology and shared services.

Network Infrastructure

  •  LEARN's optical fiber network spans over 3,200 miles across the state                  
  • Connects over 300 direct & affiliate members
  • Scalable state-of-the art optical fiber technology
  • East to west from Beaumont to El Paso and north to south from Lubbock to Brownsville
  • LEARN owned high-performance routers at its 26 strategically located POPs

LEARN Flashback

In 2015...

Researchers Use LEARN's Network to Access Shared Supercomputing Resources

Researchers in Texas and throughout the world use the LEARN network to access the elite supercomputing resources of the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) to collaborate and conduct transformational research. The latest addition to this world class facility is Lonestar 5, which is the second petaflop class system at TACC that is available to the engineering, science and medical researcher communities.

Lonestar 5 is jointly funded by the University of Texas System, the University of Texas at Austin, Texas Tech University and Texas A&M University. The system is the fifth supercomputing system to be shared by Texas universities over the past 15 years. Leveraging these critically important shared resources would not be possible without LEARN's advanced high-performance network. Using the LEARN network, researchers from the contributing university partners are able to schedule access to Lonestar 5 via TACC's User Portal.

Lonestar 5 is a Cray XC40 supercomputer, which contains over 30,000 Intel Xeon cores and provides a peak performance of 1.25 petaflops. This new resource is far more powerful than Lonestar 4 with 50% more microprocessor cores and a peak performance that is 400% faster than its predecessor. This significant "upgrade" was needed to meet the growing demand of Texas researchers for access to supercomputing resources.

The university and private sector designers configured Lonestar 5 with the optimum balance of fast processors, larger than normal memory per core and interconnects that give researchers the ability to run very large models without having to wait in normal queues. This design enables researchers to test models and tune parameters more quickly to accelerate scientific discovery.

Texas is a leader in cutting edge research globally. Through partnerships between the public and private sectors, our researchers have access to advanced computing systems, visualization systems used to model the very large data sets that are generated by supercomputers, a high performance research network that is interconnected with other advanced networks globally, extensive data storage arrays and data analysis systems. For Texas to remain a leader in research and to compete for funding on a global scale, we must continue to create partnerships and make investments that will attract the best and brightest students and researchers to Texas.