An international academic-industrial collaboration will explore options for expanding fiber optic data capacity in densely populated areas. The €1.5 million SAFARI (Scalable And Flexible optical Architecture for Reconfigurable Infrastructure) project is one of four networks initiatives recently announced under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program. It will involve researchers from the University of Southampton in England, the Technical University of Denmark, Coriant GmbH of Germany, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp. and Fujikura Ltd. of Japan. Establishing data connections of at least 400 Gb/s per channel is the project’s main goal. This will involve combining state-of-the-art multicore optical fibers with space division multiplexing (SDM) networks to produce highly scalable and flexible optical transport networks. The other three projects involve research around the Internet of Things and radio network architectures for 5G communications. “The cloud, big data, the Internet of Things and fast networking are four key ingredients of a new Internet paradigm,” said European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes. “Our investments in digital technologies today will repay far into the future. We should work together as Europe to create a connected digital single market, and with other parts of the world too, on a common approach and for a common scope.” For more information, visit www.europa.eu and www.southampton.ac.uk.