Cable compendium: a guide to the week’s submarine and terrestrial developments

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28 Mar 2014

PCCW Global, the international operating division of Hong Kong’s HKT, has signed a collaborative agreement with Phase3 Telecom, a National Long Distance Operator (NLDO) licensed by the Nigeria Communication Commission (NCC) to provide transmission services to Nigerian telecoms operators, internet service providers (ISPs) and corporations using fibre-optic systems carried along electricity infrastructure. Following the agreement, Phase3 Telecom will have access to PCCW Global’s international MPLS network, which covers major African cities such as Nairobi, Dar es Salaam, Maputo, Johannesburg and Cape Town, as well as 3,000 other cities around the world. Meanwhile, PCCW Global will gain improved access to networks in Nigeria via Phase3 Telecom’s robust fibre infrastructure.

Huawei Marine Networks, a global submarine cable networks provider, has partnered with Telkom Indonesia, to successfully upgrade the PT Telkom 3rd Route submarine cable system with 100Gbps technology. The solution was implemented over two existing segments comprising 380km and 360km of cable, respectively, and incorporates soft-decision forward error correction (SD-FEC) technology.

Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT) has confirmed that it will build, operate and manage what it describes as ‘South Asia’s first state-of-the-art Submarine Cable Depot’ in Magampura Mahinda Rajapaksa Port (MMRP) at Hambantota. SLT will operate the cable depot in Sri Lanka as a joint venture with Indian Ocean Cableship Pvt Ltd (IOCPL), a ship service provider for South East Asia & Indian Ocean Cable Maintenance Agreement (SEAIOCMA). In related news, SLT has selected a location at Browns Hills, Matara to establish the landing station for the SEA-ME-WE 5 undersea cable system. The company decided against building the landing station in Colombo, as the Matara stretch of cable provides the ‘least latency for signal transmission’.

Telkom South Africa has announced that it is an ‘active participant’ in the latest upgrade to the East African Submarine System (EASSy). In January this year Alcatel-Lucent won a contract to upgrade the undersea system with 100G technology, enabling it to ultimately carry capacity in excess of 10Tbps. The 10,000km EASSy cable is implemented in a protected ring configuration linking eight countries from Sudan to South Africa, via Djibouti, Kenya, Tanzania, Madagascar, Comoros and Mozambique.

Jamaica-based Digicel Business has commenced work on USD600 million fibre network, starting in Montego Bay. The fibre will be deployed along Bevin Avenue in St James, to the Montego Free Zone and Fairview. Work will then continue in New Kingston and Downtown Kingston; the project, which is being undertaken by Sierra and Cisco, is expected to be completed this summer.

A new 1,000km submarine cable is set to link mainland India with the Andaman and Nicobar islands at a cost of some INR8 billion (USD132.8 million). The project will be implemented by Andaman and Nicobar Islands Integrated Development Corp Ltd, through the Ministry of Home Affairs. Additional technical support will be provided by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT).

Saudi Telecom Company (STC) has completed work on a new DWDM network, which it says has a capacity of 8TBps – a tenfold improvement on the capacity of its old network. The infrastructure spans 12,000km.

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