JAMSTEC（Zipangu in the Ocean Program）
In the 13th century, the Italian explorer/merchant Marco Polo described Japan as Zipangu, that is, the island of gold in the Travels of Marco Polo. In fact, Japan once was the world-leading producer of gold, silver, and copper, but now it imports almost all its needed metal resources from abroad. Although these resources on land have been mined out, the seabed around the Japanese archipelago is still believed to hold a wealth of mineral resources. The goal of the Nextgeneration Technology for Ocean Resources Exploration (Zipangu in the Ocean) Project is to develop ocean resource survey technologies to launch our nation forward in creating a world-leading ocean resource survey industry.