In the past months, the Quantum project partners have made some tremendous progress with their efforts to install the new TEN-155 network for European research and development purposes. For DANTE, the company which organizes international network services for the European research community, the work related to the TEN-155 initiative, has turned into a major activity. The supply contract for the main part of the network capacity has been signed at the end of last August.
TEN-155 is the official successor of the TEN-34 network and will obtain a permanent follow-up in the Quantum Test Programme (QTP). This programme serves as the counterpart of TF-TEN, which provided the same services for TEN-34. QTP will be used to test and validate new technologies, products and services, in order to integrate them into the operational TEN-155 service at a convenient time. As the co-ordinating partner in the Quantum project, DANTE has been assigned to manage the test programme.
The national research networks in Europe also participate in the Quantum project and are expected to assist in the QTP, together with the associated partner, Telebit Communications A/S. This company will offer technical support as well as laboratory testing facilities whenever needed. For that matter, both individuals and organizations are invited to contribute to the QTP to deliver manpower, equipment or services. All the tasks for the QTP will be made publicly available, as well as the final results.
In addition, the Quantum partners plan on directly connecting the European TEN-155 research network with the Asia Pacific Advanced Network (APAN) via a landing in South Korea. At the end of August, DANTE has introduced this idea as an important recommendation to the European Commission in the final report of the CAPE study. This study is dealing with the Connection of Asia Pacific to Europe. APAN has been established in June 1997 as a not for profit international consortium to promote the exchange of research and development within all member networks.
Since then, networks based in Australia, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, the USA, and Canada have joined the consortium. DANTE, in the capacity of representative for the European research networks, also has become one of the APAN liaison members. In this regard, DANTE has proposed to connect to Asia Pacific for a minimum commitment period of three years in order to base the installation of the network on a fair sharing of the costs. The use of lines and of Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) technology are the major criteria to allow future upgrades of the link.
The TEN-155 network will be presented to a broad audience during the TERENA networking Conference, which will be held in Dresden from October 5th to 8th. DANTE will be represented both by Howard Davies and Roberto Sabatino. At the DANTE Web site, you can find more details about the Quantum Test Programme. For two interesting viewpoints on TEN-155, we refer to the VMW articles reporting on lectures by Hans-Peter Axmann and David O. Williams.