ESO Now Delivers Videos and Fulldome Material Faster

From a Server Near You

26 maart 2015

As a scientific institution, ESO provides good infrastructure to deliver cutting-edge astronomical data to astronomers in ESO’s Member States. But, among many other things, ESO also offers almost 10 000 images and 2500 videos for the wider use of the media and public.

All of ESO’s images and videos are provided free of charge, and most of our internet traffic results from the distribution of videos — everything from video podcasts to large Ultra HD and planetarium fulldome videos. Some of the bigger files are a few gigabytes in size, and can be up to 400 gigabytes for fulldome planetarium shows.

Up to now ESO has only had one server location — at ESO Headquarters in Germany — from where it distributed all content across the globe. However, with about 40% of ESO’s public traffic originating from outside Europe, the disadvantage in terms of speed and the ease with which these users could access ESO content has been a concern for more than a decade.

The delivery of huge files across the world from a single location results in high latency — or a slow transfer of data — for users furthest from the server, and as many of our videos are designed to be previewed on the screen in real time, accessing such content from a server located so far away means stuttering playback of videos etc.

A Content Delivery Network (CDN) was a frequent topic of discussion, but only now, due to changes in the market, the arrival of new CDN providers and the increasing urgency of our situation, have we been in a position to set up a partnership with such a network.

As part of a collaboration, the CDN provider CDN77 has now placed all ESO’s videos and images on 27 servers throughout the world. This gives users, particularly those in the Americas, Asia and Australia, much faster access to ESO content. This especially advantageous for web visitors from ESO’s 16th Member State Brazil (undergoing ratification) and our host nation Chile.

The many servers provide quicker and more convenient access to ESO content worldwide for users outside Europe, whether that means downloading planetarium shows, Ultra HD videos and images or watching podcasts, and users can expect to be able to download and view content up to ten times faster than is currently the case.



Mathias André
Web and Advanced Projects Coordinator
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3200 6760

Lars Lindberg Christensen
Head of ESO ePOD
Garching bei München, Germany
Tel: +49 89 3200 6761
Cell: +49 173 3872 621

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