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The University of Notre Dame Upgrades Live Video Streaming with Flexible, Portable Appliances

The University of Notre Dame Upgrades Live Video Streaming with Flexible, Portable Appliances

The University of Notre Dame and its video production resource, Notre Dame Studios, serve students and the University community with live and recorded events and original programming. For the staff and students responsible for creating and delivering live streaming content, one of the most important days on the academic calendar is Notre Dame Day.

Each spring, Notre Dame Day inspires and entertains alumni, students, family, and friends with stories from around the world. The 29-hour live streaming broadcast of on-campus events features interviews, performances, and guest appearances, all in celebration of the famous institution.

In advance of this year’s Notre Dame Day, Notre Dame Studios was tasked with building a solution to broadcast high-quality video streams directly from central or remote sites across the 1,250 acre (505 hectare) campus. The new video solution would need to support a wide range of live programming - academic, faith, student life, and athletics -  to be distributed locally through campus channels or to be viewed on connected devices anywhere. This meant securing a video encoding solution that was small and portable, with minimal power and cooling requirements, yet with a comprehensive set of features. The system would have to be capable of living in or out of a racked environment and reliably streaming content 24x7, as well as easily installed in a variety of locations. And, the solution had to be simple, with only power, SDI, and Ethernet connectivity for quick setup and startup.

To meet its requirements, Notre Dame selected the AWS Elemental Live small form factor appliances. Measuring just 10.5 x 1.75 x 9.5 in. (26.7 x 4.4 x 24.1 cm) with a weight of 4.5 lbs. (2.0 kg), these systems are ideal for placing in rolling kits to transport equipment to event locations, as well as mounting in racks in a video operations hub. AWS Elemental Live software meets Notre Dame Studios’ requirements today with support for 720p high-definition video and the H.264 AVC compression standard, and is ready to meet future requirements with built-in support for 1080p and high-efficiency video coding (HEVC) compression. Power requirements are simple, and no extra cooling is needed. With AWS Elemental small form factor hardware, video production can now move anywhere it needs to go.

Live broadcasts of Notre Dame Day provided a challenging, high-stakes environment for Notre Dame’s new streaming solution. The compact appliances performed flawlessly, providing adaptive bitrate streams for distribution by Notre Dame Studios to a variety of diverse endpoints, including several content delivery networks and video services including Facebook, YouTube, CBS Interactive, and the website. With AWS Elemental, the University was able to bring Notre Dame Day events live from across the campus to Notre Dame global community. Now, Notre Dame Studios can benefit from a flexible, future-ready live streaming solution in service of its mission year-round.

For more on Notre Dame Studios and their deployment of AWS Elemental Live small form factor solutions, read our case study.