The only certainty is that nothing is certain. - Pliny the Elder

The Russian Institute for Public Network Public Networking (RIPN) is a non-profit organization that was created in 1991 by the State Science and Higher Education Committee of the Russian Federation and the Kurchatov Institute of Atomic Energy (KIAE). Its mission is to develop technologies for establishing and developing computer networks for exchange of information and giving special priority to governmental, educational, and scientific institutions. Specific aims include:

  • Developing computer communications in the interests of Research & Education (R&E);
  • Coordinating IP networking in Russia;
  • Promoting research studies in the field of computer communications;
  • Supporting R&E organizations in getting access to the Internet information resources via public networks.

RIPN is one of the main organizations working on the program "Creation of national computer networks for science and higher education" (years 1995-98). The program is funded by the following governmental organizations: Department of Scientific and Technological policy of RF, State Committee of Higher Education, Russian Academy of Science, Russian Foundation for fundamental research and Department of Communication. RIPN participates in key research and education projects in regional cities throughout Russia.

Thus far the main result of this program activity has been the creation of the Russian Backbone Network (RBnet). Several nodes of RBnet have been established, and State Universities and some other scientific and educational organizations have been connected to the network in the following cities: Moscow, St. Petersburg, Tver, Novosibirsk, Ekaterinburg, Rostov-na-Donu, Samara, Omsk, Kemerovo, Irkustk, Novgorod, Ufa, Simbirsk, Tomsk, Nizhny Novgorod, Perm, Chelyabinsk, Tula and Krasnodar. Links with the following scientific networks were established: RELARN-IP, RUNNET, FREENET, MSU-NET, IIP-NET (ISF), RSSI, Radio-MSU, as well as with the following public networks: EUnet/Relcom, Demos/Internet, GLASNET, ROSPRINT, SOVAM and others.

RIPN accomplished the development of North Moscow Backbone Network (NMBB) and established nodes in more than 7 main centers in Russia, along with fiber optic connections in more than 7 centers. The NMBB now includes 12 FDDI nodes and approximately 30 connections to research centers via Ethernet (10Mbps). The main nodes of the network were established using the Cisco System's Catalyst-1200 with FDDI modules. Now organizations can get connected at speeds up to 100 Mbps. The network has been operational for 1.5 years.

One of the main tasks of the RIPN is to support the Network Information Center (NIC) for xSU/RU. The constituent parts of the NIC activity are: registration of IP numbers for the customers from the blocks delegated RIPN by the Europe coordination body-RIPE ("last resort" IP registry); administration of ".ru" top level domain; support of the Internet document store; and support of persons and organizations directory services. RIPN provides additional free-of-charge information services on selected topics.

RIPN plans to provide an ATM-based MAN as the next stage of Moscow backbone. It will include 4-5 nodes interconnected by 155Mbps links. After the ATM-based backbone is established, several ATM customer "clouds" will be connected, including MSU, Kurchatov Institute, IOC (FREENET), RAS Supercomputer center, and other Research centers. The connection to St. Petersburg ATM-based MAN will also be provided.

RIPN is the leading organization in RELARN, association of scientific and educational organizations, users of computer networks, and develops a non-profit scientifically and educationally oriented network RELARN-IP for this association. Currently, RELARN consists of about 800 organizations from more than 100 Russian cities. More than 100 organizations are connected to RELARN-IP (which is, itself, a customer of RBnet). Scientific and educational institutions are connected to both base and access nodes of RELARN-IP network. Further information on RELARN is provided.

RIPN is uniquely positioned to assist in the growth of NaukaNet by encouraging access to academic centers across Russia. Its years of experience with Russian Internet networking and the many important relationships established with academic institutions, government organizations and non-profit organizations are of enormous value to this effort. RIPN (and Dr. Alexei Platonov in particular) was instrumental in obtaining agreement of the Ministry for Science and Technology of the Russian Federation to cost share $500,000 on the NaukaNet connection (letter of support from Deputy Minister V.V. Nichkov included in attachments).

Visit RIPN's website at

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Funding for NaukaNet provided by the US National Science Foundation and the Ministry for Industry, Science and Technology of the Russian Federation. Telecommunications services are provided by Telia, Inc.

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Updated: 1999-09-

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NaukaNet Online at 45 Mbps on way to 155 Mbps in Jan'2002


National Science Foundation and Russian Ministry of Industry, Science and Technology Fund New High Speed Network For Scientific Collaboration

RESTON, Va. and MOSCOW, Russia, December 14, 2001 – NCSA and the Kurchatov Institute, top research institutions in the U.S. and Russia respectively, today announced they have selected Teleglobe (NYSE, TSE: BCE), the e-World Communications Company, to develop a 155 megabit per second (Mbps) secure data connection that will give the two countries’ scientific communities unprecedented access to each other and facilitate joint scientific and educational projects.

The link, called NaukaNet (For Advanced Science and Technology Network), is funded in part by a $2 million grant from the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) to the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Russian support for the link is from the Russian Ministry of Industry, Science and Technology. NaukaNet supports a strong alliance between NCSA, the Russian Research Center “Kurchatov Institute” in Moscow, the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Moscow-based Joint Supercomputer Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Teleglobe.

The new NaukaNet network will increase the bandwidth between the U.S. and Russia by orders of magnitude. NaukaNet will facilitate communications through high quality video-conferencing that has never been possible on such a wide basis between the U.S. and Russian scientific communities. The network’s capabilities will be put to use during the U.S.-Russian Science and Technology Dialog -- a series of science and technology working groups in nine different scientific disciplines, scheduled to begin next month. Following these dialogs, the discussions will expand to a broader range of topics and disciplines.

Full story here ...