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Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory & Japan Gigabit Network. TAO. T elecommunications A dvancement O rganization of Japan. August, 2002. Tatsuzo Koga.

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tsukuba gigabit laboratory japan gigabit network
Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory&Japan Gigabit Network


Telecommunications Advancement Organization of Japan

August, 2002

Tatsuzo Koga


In the early nineties, the US Government actively promoted the establishment of the National Information Infrastructure (NII) to enhance the competitiveness of the US industries in global markets. The US spent 4.6 billion dollars in the period 1992-1996 to implement the High Performance Computing and Communications Initiatives(HPCC) to promote the development of the next generation technologies and applications in telecommunications. In 1997, the Next Generation Internet (NGI) program was unveiled with a budget of 85 million dollars in fiscal year 1998. The high-speed NGI network was to connect more than 100 sites nationwide, thus to establish a widely accessible test-bed. As a result of these initiatives, a noticeable competitiveness of the US industries had been achieved.


The Japanese Government took initiatives to catch up the US and other frontrunner countries. Recognizing the importance of developing advanced research facilities with very high-speed network systems in promoting research and development of high-speed networking and high-performance application technologies, the Japanese Government allocated a 57.3 billion yen (477.5 million dollars: US$1 = \120) budget in the fiscal year 1998 to the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications. Financed by the Ministry with this budget, the TAO, Telecommunications Advancement Organization of Japan, designed and developed the JGN, Japan Gigabit Network, as a nationwide research and development facility.


The Japan Gigabit Network is comprised of five laboratories and a high-speed backbone network of optical fiber with a maximum transmission rate of 2.4 Gbps. The backbone is connected via ten ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) switches to fifty-four connecting nodes located in major cities throughout Japan. It provides universities, industries, and local and national government agencies with test-beds open to both public and private bodies for collaborative research and development of advanced networking technologies and applications. A public announcement is made every four months to invite applications for the use of the laboratory facilities, while applications for the use of the backbone network can be filed throughout the year.

jgn japan gigabit network
JGN: Japan Gigabit Network

・Gigabit Network (max. 2.4Gbps)

ATM Switches: 10 

Connecting Nodes: 54 

・Gigabit Laboratories(collaborative open test-beds)

5: Tsukuba, Keihanna, Kitakyushu,

       Okayama, Kyoto

・Research Centers

2:  Makuhari, Kochi

5 gigabit laboratories
5 Gigabit Laboratories

Open Test-beds for Collaborative Research

  • Tsukuba, Keihanna, Kitakyushu
  •   for research and development of advanced networking technologies and applications for the G-bps class of transmission using high performance equipment of cutting-edge technology
  • Kyoto, Okayama
  • for test and evaluation of optical telecommunications using the high speed networks including those of the G-bps class of transmission installed in small areas of local communities and end equipment

Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory (Front View)


tsukuba gigabit laboratory
Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

opened: April, 1999

DirectorTatsuzo Koga

  Administrator  Takayuki Nakamura

  Technical Supervisor  Shigetada Ishii

                Keiji Uemura

                Junzo Okunaka

                Takuro Matsumoto

                Yasuhiro Yokomaku

Kentaro Watanabe

Registered Research Staff: approx.50

tsukuba gigabit laboratory10


① Community Room

② Digital Content Production

③ Long Distance Optical Transmission Test

④ Home-Networking Development/Test

Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

⑤ High Speed Image Transmission Test

⑥ Distributed Computer Resources Network

⑦ ATM Network Systems Test

⑧ High Quality Image Processing/Test


Community Room

This room is suited for short-term use by small groups of local communities, schools, venture businesses, or local industries for seminar classes or training courses. It is also used as a visitors assembly hall where an introductory briefing is given about the facility prior to the guided tour. Twenty laptop personal computers and a 50-inch plasma display are provided to provide participants an opportunity to use PCs and see the impressive view on a large display. A teleconference system is installed in this room and is regularly used in practice by our staff connecting the Kitakyushu and the Keihanna Gigabit Laboratories via the ATM backbone of the Japan Gigabit Network. Also placed in this room are four commercially available 64 kbps-class videophones. Visitors can witness the high quality of moving pictures made possible by the advanced technology. The Tsukuba Gigabit Seminar is held in this room. The teleconference system is used for the seminar to invite participation in it from the Keihannna and Kitakyushu Gigabit Laboratories in the bi-directional mode. The seminar is also distributed simultaneously on the Internet.


Digital Content Production Facility

All the equipment and software necessary for the development of high performance interactive digital content are available, including ten digital video cameras. A video studio equipped with a lighting system and a computer and display console can be used for camera and editorial work using image data library. Acoustic synthesizing equipment is available for the creation of acoustic materials of digital voice and music and for research and development of technology for synchronizing them with motion video. Six desktop personal computers with 2D and 3D graphics animation software for the creation of computer graphics are available. Video editing equipment is to be used for editing the video content with the aid of available visual materials. Sound editing equipment is used for synchronizing the acoustic materials with video content


Long Distance Optical Transmission Test Facility

Fifteen cable wheels, each carrying a 10-km long fiber optics cable with 24 optical fibers inside, are stored on the roof of the headquarters building, exposed to the open sky. These are used to simulate a long-distance backbone cable in commercial use. A line of optical fiber as long as 3,600 km could be realized if all the fibers were connected in series. In current practice, however, the longest optical fiber used for testing is 600 km. Tests may include the evaluation of various line characteristics such as dependency on the wavelength, the integrity of links connecting network interface equipment, and the feasibility of application software services. In addition to the cable wheels, the facility consists of wavelength division multiplexing equipment and end terminal equipment for optical transmission at 10 Gbps.


Home-Networking Development and Test Facility

Various items of equipment are available for research and development as well as for the evaluation of home-networking technologies to accommodate integrated customer services for access to high-speed networks. Topics of research and development may include installation of end system interfaces for high performance standards such as IEEE1394, design and evaluation of wired home-network, particularly with optical fibers, and of wireless broadband systems. Also included is the system evaluation for electronic acquisition of authorized certificates by the end user at the home-network terminal. One example is a certificate of residence from a municipal office. Here, personal security and recognition is an important subject of research. A pneumatically suspended optical table and an electromagnetic anechonic chamber insulated from electromagnetic interference are available.


High Speed Image Transmission Test Facility

Research and development of image processing and transmission technologies for HDTV is being conducted. High-speed video transmission tests are being conducted between the Keihanna and Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratories through the Japan Gigabit Network backbone. The purpose of the current research is to create a seamless virtual space in which conference attendees at multiple sites are put together for teleconferencing. Techniques to achieve better face-to-face communication in a teleconference are being developed such as a method of maintaining the same eye-level contact.


Distributed Computer Resources Networking Facility

Two systems of high-speed computers (one vector and one scalar) are installed in this room; each has its own advantages and/or disadvantages. The facility looks more like a usual computer center we can see everywhere. The difference is that they are implemented in a network system. Protocols and techniques are sought to make the best use of the advantages of those distributed heterogeneous computer resources over the network. A large-scale simulation of molecular orbits in computational chemistry is currently being undertaken as a research project.


ATM Network Systems Test Facility

An ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) switching network is available. An ATM-ring system consisting of multiple local networks and their satellites is connected to the backbone network via an ATM switch. It may be used for the development of the technology for ATM network transmission and connection to the backbone network via ATM switches. It may also be used for the evaluation of error rate, jitter, and latency of transmission. Terminal ports are available for serial interface for analog four-wire circuits, digital 1.5 Mbps and 6 Mbps cables, and for the interface for ATM 155 Mbps switches.


High Quality Image Processing and Evaluation Facility

Systems of servers and end equipment are available for the development and evaluation of high quality images. A 110 inch-type large screen and HDTV projectors are installed in a monitoring room. A research project for an advanced HDTV system is currently being undertaken and is used for public demonstration. The advanced system achieves a very high quality image with a resolution and brightness that are both four times higher than the conventional HDTV. It allows us to make detailed observations of electronically accessed art works from virtual libraries or museums. Advanced techniques for searching library data and for intellectual property right management, including electronic watermarks, are important topics of research.



Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

Facilities(with charge)

application every 4 months

(anytime if available)

Gigabit Network(free of charge)

application all year around

Contact: staff@tsukuba.tao.go.jp


Service Charges: Examples

Community Room


Digital Content Production Facility

1,600 ~ 14,200yen/day/unit

Home-Networking Development and Test Facility

10,200 ~ 37,500yen/day/unit

Distributed Computer Resources Networking Facility


discount: 80% for schools, 60% for small business

tsukuba gigabit laboratory37


April, 2001~March, 2002

●Research Topics:32(incl. short term 23)

Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

●Research Teams: 25

●Visitors: 31 groups、 

450 persons


Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

Number of Visitors & Groups


Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

Number of Research Themes

tsukuba gigabit laboratory40


① support advanced research

② promote public interest and participation   in information society

Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

③ enhance multimedia activities in local   community

④ promote/incubate venture businesses

achievements support advanced research
ACHIEVEMENTS① support advanced research

Distributed Computer Resources Networking Facility

Papers 9(domestic 5、international 4)

Long Distance Optical Transmission Test Facility

Paper 1(domestic), Patent 1

Home-Networking Development and Test Facility

Paper 9(domestic 6, international 3)

High Speed Image Transmission Test Facility

Paper 6(domestic), Patent 3

Digital Content Production Facility

Paper 4(domestic), Patent 1

Community Room

Paper 1(domestic)

achievements promote public interest and participation in information society
ACHIEVEMENTS② promote public interest and participation in information Society

Tsukuba Gigabit Seminar

to 24th (monthly except August and December)

Lecture, Facility Tour

TV-Conference System via JGN, Internet

actively participated in public events

achievements enhance multimedia activities in local community
ACHIEVEMENTS③ enhance multimedia activities in local community

Tsukuba WAN Project

Participation in RABnet Planning Committee

Promotion of Tsukuba WAN Project

Installation of ADM

School Internet

Cooperation for installation and start-up


ACHIEVEMENTS④ promote/incubate venture businesses



Registered User: Tsukuba Multimedia Inc.

Facility: Digital Contents Production Facility

Research Theme:Local Community Information and Multimedia Digital Contents for Internet 


ACHIEVEMENTS④ promote/incubate venture businesses


Revolve Institute of School Education

Registered User:Revolve Inst. of School Edu.

Facility: Community Room

Research Theme: Teaching Method to Give Children Good Motivation to Learn English


ACHIEVEMENTS④ promote/incubate venture businesses



Registered User: PC User’s Club

Facility: Community Room

Research Theme: Development of Effective Teaching Method and Manual for PC Beginners


ACHIEVEMENTS④ promote/incubate venture businesses


Registered User: Univ. Tsukuba

Facility: Community Room

Research Theme: Development of IT-Based Community e-Health Systems


Tsukuba Science City

1963 Cabinet decision

1970 Enacted into Law

1973 University of Tsukuba

1980 City Development Plan

1985 Tsukuba Science Expo

1997 Basic Law on Science and Technology

1999 Tsukuba Gigabit Laboratory

2001 Independent Administrative Agencies

2005 Tsukuba Express (New Joban Line)


Location: 60 km North East of Tokyo

Population:    190,000

Researchers: 13,000

public: 8,500

private: 4,500

Research Institutions: 

approx. 200

(34= national)

independent administrative agencies
Independent Administrative Agencies

Mat. Sci.

Agricultural Res. Org.

Earth Sci. Disast. Prev.

Agrobiological Sci.

Environmental Studies

Agro-Env. Sci.

Sci. Musium

Rural Eng.

Teacher’s Development

Food Res. Inst.

Nat. Archieves

Int. Res. Cent. Agr. Sci.

Public Works Res. Inst.

Forest. & For. Products

Building Res. Inst.

Seeds & Seedings

Adv. Industrial Sci. Tech.


Tsukuba WAN Project

( )

Future plan



Super computer











Access Ring Network













community network projects
Community Network Projects

Ibaraki Broad Band Network

Tsukuba Smart Corridor Project

ACCS Cable Network

Tsukuba WAN

itbl project
ITBL Project

(IT-Based Laboratory)

Atomic Energy Res. Inst.

Nat. Inst. Mat. Sci.

Res. Inst. Earth Sci. Disast. Prev.

Inst. Phy. Chem. Res.

Japan Sci. Tech. Corp.

Nat. Aerospace Lab.