The Internet Engineering Task Force, the Internet’s main standards setting body, has selected its new chairman - IBM researcher Brian Carpenter.

The appointment was announced late yesterday and will be made official 9 March at the all-volunteer group’s meeting in Minneapolis.

Carpenter replaces Harald Alvestrand, a Cisco Systems fellow who resigned the post after four tumultuous years spent restructuring the group’s administrative processes and improving its financial situation. Alvestrand will return to a full-time post with Cisco in Norway this summer.

Carpenter is a distinguished engineer with IBM’s Systems Research Group at its Zurich Research Lab in Switzerland. Carpenter has been active in the IETF’s development of IPv6, a long-awaited upgrade to the Internet’s main protocol, IPv4.

Carpenter has co-authored 21 IETF standards known as Requests for Comments. These RFCs span topics ranging from ways to provide quality of service over the Internet to the status of end-to-end connectivity and transparency over the Internet.