SPIE Communications

SPIE helps Marseille-Fos Port to modernise its network infrastructure


SPIE helps Marseille-Fos Port to modernise its network infrastructure

Paris, 6 May 2019 – SPIE ICS, a digital services subsidiary of SPIE, the independent European leader in multi-technical services in the areas of energy and communications, and the team from the Marseille-Fos Port (GPMM) Networks & Telecoms Division complete the upgrading of the GPMM’s network infrastructure. Smarter, quicker and more powerful, the new network aims to support the development of all of the port’s activities as part of its digital transformation.

France’s largest port, Marseille-Fos Port cover 80 km of coastline from Port Saint-Louis to Marseille. In order to better meet the needs of its 1100 employees, the port used the Avaya LAN solution contract concluded by UGAP, France’s public sector purchasing organisation, to modernise the entirety of its network deployed in 2009.

SPIE ICS, which has maintained the network since 2014 in partnership with the manufacturer Avaya (acquired in 2017 by Extreme Networks), won this new contract in 2018 by offering progressive solutions fitted to the challenges faced by the Mediterranean port. Giving thought to the modernisation of the network architecture, choice of material, software validation, delivery times and migration phasing have been key points in the preliminary exchanges between the SPIE, GPMM and manufacturer teams.

Optimising the network’s performance

In just four months (from September to December 2018), the teams from SPIE ICS and GPMM gradually replaced the network cores and the infrastructure that links 12 locations in the port (one location in Fos-sur-Mer, one in La Fossette, one in Port-Saint-Louis-du-Rhône and nine in Marseille). This has increased the network speed from 10 to 40 Gbps. Using the latest technology and software provided by Extreme Networks, this new, more powerful network offers its users maximum availability and resistance. This reduces the response time when users request port applications such as Neptune Software (*). So as to guarantee the continuity of the port service, the teams from SPIE ICS and GPMM intervened without causing a prolonged connection interruption (a maximum of 10 minutes per location).

Enabling network operation

The management of the whole network is now simplified, mainly thanks to the choice of a homogeneous material and centralised operation. Particular attention has also been paid to the ergonomics of the network administration solution. “SPIE ICS carried out a lot of work in the field of design and technical engineering,” explains Benjamin Derégnieaux, a business engineer at SPIE ICS. “We chose Fabric Attach & Fabric Connect SPB (**) technologies for increased effectiveness and responsiveness. Each new piece of equipment or new application only needs to be set up once : we no longer carry out site by site configuration, which was complicated and time-consuming.”

Frederic Dura and Philippe Soirot from Extreme Networks explain: “By using our automated Campus solution Fabric, together with our Management software, Marseille-Fos Port has built a new, fully secure and fast broadband network with full oversight.”

A more robust network for a “Smart port”

Another key component of the support provided by SPIE ICS was to migrate from analogue video systems to a numerical video system (IP). The port’s network currently readily supports the integration of the CCTV camera feeds. The GPMM will also be able to develop new services, such as performance measurement, user experience tracking, video conferencing and telephony, in order to meet the needs of its business departments.

Rémi Di Maggio, in charge of this project for the Marseille-Fos Port, states: “SPIE ICS was able to support us in strengthening our network, which is now robust enough to take on new functionalities. A beautiful synergy developed among all the parties involved thanks to strong cooperation, with very responsive and heavily involved teams for the implementation of this installation.”

This controlled way in which the modernisation project was carried out persuaded GPMM to renew its confidence in SPIE ICS by assigning them the task of maintaining the new network infrastructure in operational condition for the next five years.

(*) Neptune Software allows port traffic to be regulated by recording the entry and departure of vessels.

(**) SPB stands for “Shortest Path Bridging”. This technology is intended to make it easier to create and configure networks, while enabling multipath routing.




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