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Release No: 562-98
October 30, 1998


The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) recently selected two consortia to develop advanced networking research testbeds as part of the Next Generation Internet (NGI) SuperNet Program. The NGI initiative is a multi-agency, Federal research and development program that will enable a new wave of revolutionary applications through advances in networking technologies and deployment of the SuperNet research testbed. The two projects chosen are Optical Networking for Regional Access with Multiple Protocols (ONRAMP) and National Transparent Optical Networks (NTON).

The ONRAMP Consortium consists of researchers from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass.; MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Cambridge, Mass.; Ascend Communications, Westford, Mass.; Cabletron, Andover, Mass.; AT&T Local, Staten Island, N.Y.; AT&T Research Laboratories, Florham Park, N.J.; and JDS-Fitel, Nepean, Ontario. ONRAMP will extend the reach of high-speed connectivity to end-users. The consortium will create an advanced research testbed and use optical networking to investigate new approaches to the operation of Internet Protocols. The project will demonstrate the cost-effective distribution of network bandwidth to multiple end sites. DARPA is providing the consortium with $10 million over three years.

The NTON project will create an ultra-high-speed testbed linking Seattle and San Diego. Researchers will be able to test advanced applications over NTON at speeds up to 1,000 times faster than those commercially available today. Prototype switches and routers will be deployed to try out advanced architectural concepts. The NTON Consortium is composed of researchers from Nortel Networks, McLean, Va.; Sprint Communication, Burlingame, Calif.; GST Telecom Inc., Vancouver, Wash.; and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, Calif. This project is also valued at $10 million for three years.

DARPA announced 27 earlier awards totaling approximately $50 million on April 14, 1998 (DoD Blue Top No. 165-98). The Agency has also issued a solicitation calling for additional research proposals (available at http://www.darpa.mil/baa/baa99-06.htm). For more information about DARPA's NGI effort, contact Jan Walker, (703) 696-2404.

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