VTT has set up the Ethernet Laboratory where one can study and develop bleeding-edge technologies without hardware and software restrictions. The laboratory serves customers with research, testing, prototypes, and proof-of-concepts.
Ethernet is increasingly used by operators as a transport network technology due to its cost-effectiveness. There still are some issues to be solved before it can truly supersede the conventional transport technologies and redeem all the promises made for it. MPLS running on top of Ethernet is still evolving, a good example of this being the joint work by ITU-T and IETF to develop and specify an MPLS variant suitable for large transport networks with strict Operations, Administration and Maintenance (OAM) demands.
For research and development in these areas, theoretical studies are not always enough. There is a demand for practical studies to be able to build proof-of-concepts. Although there are numerous vendors making devices with standardised and proven technologies, their hardware and software products are typically too expensive for use in research.