Issue #51 - Submarine Telecoms Forum



Issue #51 - Submarine Telecoms Forum
of the
ISSN 1948-3031
a y
ISSN 1948-3031
Submarine Telecoms Forum is published
bimonthly by WFN Strategies. The
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S u b m a r i n e Te l e c o m s F o r u m i s a n
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serving as a freely accessible forum for
professionals in industries connected with
submarine optical fibre technologies and
Liability: while every care is taken in
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publishers cannot be held responsible for
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Kevin G. Summers
Tel: +[1] 703 468 0554
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Copyright © 2010 WFN Strategies
elcome to the 51st issue of Submarine
Telecoms Forum magazine, our
Subsea Capacity edition. Here are some
thoughts at 32,000 feet, somewhere over
the Pacific...
The Bose headphones with some lovely
new Frampton playing on the iPod allow
my mind to wonder. The last four days
at SubOptic in Yokohama have been an
incredible whirlwind of nonstop activity:
selling, cajoling, learning and seeing faces
of old friends from a few past lives. And
yes, new acquaintances and friends have
been made as well.
We come together as an industry just once
every few years, but it was the host's words
at TE SubCom's reception which best
express why I have worked and stayed the
last 25 years in this industry: how simply
we help people converse; how we make
this world a little smaller. Maybe that
makes us a little more empathetic to each
other, and willing to listen just a little more
to another point of view.
New fascinating technologies aside, it is
altogether quite something to be a part of
something a century and a half old. It is
also quite comforting.
Till we meet again.
In This Issue
Wayne Nielsen
The 40G Undersea Market Heats
Up Harald Bock & Joe Capasso
News Now
Back Reflection
Stewart Ash & Kaori Shikinaka
Upgrading to 40G
Jas Dhooper & Wang Jingwei
Subsea Capacity Issues
Between China and U.S.
Xu Yewei & Zhu Hongda
Feed The Need: The Explosive
Demand For Undersea
Submarine Networks World
Lowest Latency Connectivity To
South America Takes Center Stage
Erick Contag
The Communication Revolution
and Connectivity To Ireland
Derek Cassidy
Linking Africa To The World:
Opportunities Provided By ICT
Uptake Essential To Mobilising
The Youth Of Africa
Bran Herlihy
Letters to the Editor
Letter to a Friend
Jean Devos
Advertiser Index
Kevin G. Summers
 150 year old photos on BT’s new online
 Alcatel Lucent to compensate Telecom NZ
over 3G network failings
 Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs showcases
next-generation optical transmission
technologies at annual Optical Fiber
 American Samoa Hawaii Cable owners
Apply for Transfer Control
 Apollo and Alcatel-Lucent break
submarine networking speed barrier
 AQEST, the expert company in submarine
cable business, is born!
News Now
 CanaLink and Alcatel-Lucent sign multi-
million Euro contract to deploy 2000 km
submarine cable network linking Canary
Islands to Spain?s main
 Ciena Highlights Market-Leading 40G
and 100G Coherent Technology for NextGeneration Submarine Networks at
SubOptic 2010
 Confidex Ironside Micro And Confidex
Rpc Tag Family Establish Confidex As
The Tag Provider For Returnable Transit
 Corning Introduces Ultra-Low-Loss,
Large-Effective-Area Submarine Optical
 Crown Prince launches AAG submarine
 Detecon to restructure Angola Telecom
 EASSy cable lands in Tanzania
 EASSy construction completed ahead of
 Gateway Communications keeps East
and Southern Africa connected during
SEACOM outage
 Global Crossing deploys new capacity
using Xtera NXT next generation
Submarine Line Terminal Equipment
 Gulf Bridge International, Omantel sign
agreement to land GBI’s sub-sea cable
system in Oman
 Main One, Seacom And Efive Telecoms
Exploring Opportunity To Create A PanAfrican Fibre Ring Solution
 Martha’s Vineyard to receive new
submarine cable
 Mauritania connected to submarine cable
linking Europe to Africa
 Media Services Company MediaXstream
Rebranded as Hibernia Media
 NEC Deploys Latest Submarine
Earthquake Observation System with
 NTT Com to Establish New Global IPVPN POPs in Asia, U.S.A. and Europe
 Offshore Marine Management registers as
 Optical Cable Corporation Obtains New
$6 Million Revolving Credit Facility
 OTEGLOBE and Cyprus have announced
their Reselling Agreement
 Pacnet?s EAC Pacific Ready for Service
 Qtel and GBI sign agreement for new
international gateway for Qatar
 Repair work on SEAMEWE-4 submarine
cable to start
 Rostelecom, As Part Of An International
Consortium, Signed A Contract With
Alcatel-Lucent To Modernize Georgia Russia Communications Line
 Sea-Me-We-3 Suffers Fault
 Seacom Network Disturbance Caused
By Extended Repair Work On Sea-Me-We
4 Cable
 Seacom Rival Eassy Set To Go Live
 SubOptic Releases Final Program
 SubTel Forum Podcast – Episode 5: Global
Marine Systems
 Tata Communications Partners With
Infinity Africa To Expand Its Global
Network And Service Offering Into
 Telecommunication Infrastructure
Company Of I.R.Iran And Gulf Bridge
International Agree To Land Gbi’s
Submarine Cable In Iran
 Telecuba Request Fcc Waiver
 Unity Cable System Completed, Boosts
Trans-Pacific Connectivity
 Usda-Rus Issues New Guide For
Broadband Stimulus Round Ii
 Verizon Business Enhances European
Network, Plans Europe India Gateway
 Wfn Strategies Achieves Bbb
 Wfn Strategies Becomes Certified
 Wfn Strategies Establishes Aqest As
European Business Development Office
 Wfn Strategies To Teach SubOptic 2010
Master Class
Upgrading to 40G
Jas Dhooper
& Wang Jingwei
C apacity
New initial C apac ity?
New S L T E
T rib
Upgrade B eyond the
Des ign C apacity
Des ign C apacity
T rib
Overlay (Hybrid) Wavelength Upgrade
Narrower channel spacing, more wavelengths
E xis ting S L T E
C apacity
G rowth
Initial C apac ity
T rib
More C hannels or
Higher B it R ate
B uild a New S ys tem?
ystem owners have invested heavily
in the construction of submarine
cable systems, they want a longer
service life along with good expendability
on the capacity - always being partially lit
when the cable commences operation. But,
with the explosive escalation of the internet
application, mobile communications and
other related network applications, the
system capacity will be upgraded until
reaching its maximal design capacity.
Then, you may ask, is that the end of the
system’s maximum capacity? The answer
is absolutely not.
With the development of transmission
technologies such as the DWDM
T rib
T rib: T ributary
C P L: coupler
C T B : C able T erminal B ox
S LM: S ubmarine Line Monitor
S ervic e L ife
technology and wavelength rate, the
maximum capacity for an existing
submarine system can be promoted to a
higher level than its original design. The
number of wavelengths can be upgrade up
to 192 wavelengths per fiber pair (25GHz
channel spacing) and the wavelength
rate can be greatly increased to 10Gbps,
even 40Gbps. The 40Gbps technology has
become more mainstream as technology
progresses. And the 100Gbps is destined
to emerge as the future trend in industry.
All of these facts indicate that existing
submarine cable systems have great
potential in possible capacity expansion
with the evolution of transmission
For different systems, operators can choose
adding or replacing advanced terminal
equipments to increase the bandwidth.
There are two options for adding terminal
equipments - lighting dark fibers; and
overlay wavelength. These two solutions
can add new wavelengths to the system as
well as keep the old terminal equipments.
Replacing terminal equipment enables
full utilization of the advantages of new
equipments and realize the maximum
bandwidth, but there is also a waste of old
For many operators, these methods
provide an effective way to boost traffic
volume by introducing new services.
station equipment, before looking towards
marine activities and potentially replacing
the submarine cable system!
In the current climate these methods
are proving to be very popular and
cost effective, providing an increase in
system life and enhancing both revenue
generating opportunities and network
headroom. Other options such as network
restoration capability can also be serviced
by these upgrade options.
This is also an important way to increase
revenue, but there are also various factors
at an operational level that need to be
Customers with mission critical services
don’t want to have several hours of
downtime, which equates to a loss of
revenue, during such upgrades. Therefore,
network planning and design for future
demand is a key consideration. Depending
upon the operator’s starting point, this
will determine any potential impact, and it
would be fair to say that the above upgrade
options are a sound way to minimize
that pain, and if carefully managed, have
proved to have virtually no impact to
existing services. Where there is a potential
traffic hit, then either restoration paths
can be used to divert capacity, or planned
works can be set up at a point in time that
has minimal customer disruption.
From the operator’s perspective, the
ability to add incremental channel cards
or to introduce an overlay solution really
does enable a significant improvement
both to operational efficiency and a return
on the investment. There is considerable
economic sense in upgrading the landing
Whilst the introduction of new DWDM
technology may involve the implementation
of separate NMS platforms adding
complexity and cost, it does enable the
service provider to leverage the existing
asset base and gain an extension to its life
span. However a single platform solution
takes away such complexities and enables
the operator benefits such as end to end
management visibility, point and click
functionality and performance management.
With either option the importance of
network optimization plays an important
factor in the decision making process.
So how does this work in real life’?
We present two cases where the customer
has given us specific conditions about their
existing submarine network and capacity
upgrade needs. These case examples
are real system deployments, each with
unique system baseline conditions:
A Southeast Asia cable system faced a
great challenge due to its long service age,
as well as a bandwidth of 2.5Gbps (one
STM-16) per fiber pair. It is a crucial part
of the backbone and also a backup route
for a ring network. The customer has
a couple of options, 1) Upgrade it or 2)
build a new network. Thanks to the new
technologies, a cost-effective solution was
selected. This involved replacement the
terminal equipment with an 8x10Gbps
DWDM system.
The key features and system elements are
• Avoid building new system, low
investment achieves high return.
• Advanced technologies such as
high boost amplifier, Raman, ROPA
realize Ultra-Long hop transmission
over 300Km.
• Realize [email protected] per fiber pair,
[email protected] system
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
Submarine Cable
Land Cable
32 times of existing bandwidth,
and the higher bandwidth is also
upgradeable in future.
• Long-term stable operation, reduce
the OPEX.
The new system provides 32 times the
old bandwidth and successfully helps the
operator to save their CAPEX. As such
immediate benefits are able to be obtained
during year one of the upgrade, with
further upside as incremental capacity is
turned on with this new upgrade option.
Mediterranean region; in this case the
customer needed an upgrade on the
existing system to meet their increased
requirement for more bandwidth. But they
faced a great challenge that they wanted
to get a promotion on the capacity at the
same time to avoid affecting their existing
services. This is often a real operation
concern - how do we ensure upgrades are
really seamless?
A further customer requirement was that
they needed to keep their legacy terminal
equipment. So the solution is an overlay
wavelength upgrade to increase the
[email protected] system
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
Submarine Cable
total system bandwidth. The increased
wavelengths will add more capacity as
well as keeping existing traffic.
The key features and system elements are
Coupling with existing SLTE (4
wavelengths), almost no impact on
the existing wavelengths.
[email protected] full configuration over
DRZ format provides over 5dB
system margin, better than the
existing network performance.
So the combination of improved
modulation and increased channel count
enable the customer to gain these benefits
in addition to improvement in system
margin, and of course longevity in the
submarine cable plant.
As many earlier systems have been
deployed without the foresight of
today’s new breed of bandwidth-hungry
applications such as streaming media and
social networking, the upgrade options
presented here provide the customer
with a viable alternative option to full
submarine network replacement. As we
have seen with recent events in Iceland
and loss of European air travel, high
capacity networks will continue to play an
ever increasing role within multinational
and global organizations.
Through successful upgrade, the existing
submarine cable systems could realize
far greater bandwidth than the designed
maximum capacity to lead to a longer
service life. This is very exciting news
for operators and cable owners around
the globe. However, there are still many
details regarding the techniques employed
when handling an actual system upgrade
to refine, such as the monitoring (and
management - if needed) of wet plant,
the allocation of the wavelengths, the
chromatic dispersion compensation, the
compatibility of the service interfaces,
amongst other things. The engineering
also needs to be carefully planned and
These techniques are now firmly
established and undergoing continual
improvement, with many cases studies
from our customers we can demonstrate
a proven & robust methodology which is
real and available today.
Customers can now establish a DWDM
service using automated provisioning
and upgrades, depending upon existing
system configurations. This means quick
access to revenue.
Selecting the right choice of bandwidth to
match the service set may place additional
constraints, however today the application
of multi service cards removes any conflict,
meaning greater bandwidth per channel,
lower number of system cards (especially
for 40G transmission) and a simplified
provisioning setup.
These factors all contribute to driving
down the capital and operating cost.
Advanced technology coupled with the
right upgrade option means less hardware,
lower CAPEX and reduced operational
Therefore carriers, who have invested
heavily in the construction of submarine
cable systems, now have a real and viable
way to increase the service life span and
drive incremental revenue. The two
examples presented within this short
report give a flavor of what is possible
and many other examples exist that truly
enable customers to extend the life span
of current submarine cable systems, far
before the need to deploy new systems.
On top of all of this new technology, it
will be a matter of time before a new
development arrives on the market and
stretches the system life time further
still. R&D is heavily focused upon such
technologies to enable customers some
level of comfort that the next chapter
of future upgrade options is already in
Jas Dhooper has 20 years
Submarine & Service Provider
sectors, currently serving as
VP Service Delivery Office
for Huawei Marine Networks (HMN) in
China. He has gained significant experience
in large scale telecommunications project
delivery of optical submarine systems and
delivered many multi-million dollar projects
in a number of countries. He was employed
by STC Submarine systems in the late 1980’s,
which consolidated into Alcatel Submarine
Systems in the 1990’s. He was involved in a
number of the major transatlantic submarine
systems both in a development role and in
delivery, including time on cable ships. Jas
also has held a number of senior management
& technical positions in the operator side,
working for Cable & Wireless and Interoute
Communications since the mid-1990s. Jas
holds a Master of Business Administration
(MBA), Engineering honors degree from
London University and has published several
papers in the field of Telecommunications
and held technical positions on International
conference bodies and a Chartered member of
the IEEE.
The Communication Revolution
and Connectivity To Ireland
Derek Cassidy
Figure 1. A map
of the Atlantic
cable with
straight line
diagram. Between
Canada and
Valentia, Ireland.
t can be said that Guttenberg was
among the first group of people and
technologists responsible for the
first communications revolution with
the invention of the printing press in
the 15th century. From here the ability to
communicate with a bigger audience and
to pass on and distribute information was
made a lot easier by Guttenberg’s printing
press. Three hundred years later, the daily
newspaper became the normal system
of delivery method used for passing and
distributing information. For the next one
hundred years, the daily newspaper was
the main delivery method until the era of
the telegraph took over.
It was thanks to men like Morse, Cooke
and Wheatstone that we entered the
This revolution in communication aided
the distribution of information across
countries and continents in minutes rather
than days, weeks and months before the
telegraph age. It was soon discovered
that there was not enough capacity to
cater for all the information, and so an
increase in network design, build and
rollout took place where new telegraph
networks were built across continents,
usually following the newly laid tracks of
another new invention, the steam train.
Actually, the rollout of the railways nearly
always went hand in hand with the rollout
of the telegraph. Soon the same obstacle
to the railway was to become the same
obstacle to the telegraph, the oceans and
seas. However the telegraph was soon to
overcome this obstacle.
Ever since the invention of the telegraph
and the ability of man to communicate
across land via the electric powered
conducting wires delivering telegrams
and telegraphs messages to all corners of
the country, there was a desire to extend
that reach across the water. The first step
took place in 1850 with the laying and
putting into use of the first submarine cable
between Dover and Calais. This was a feat
so enormous that the original players did
not realise that they were making history.
It was made possible by surrounding
the copper wires or conductors needed
to transmit the electrical signals that
made the telegraph with yarn tape, wire
armouring and Indian rubber. However,
the Indian rubber which was the water
repellent insulator was soon replaced
by a more sustainable product thanks to
Bewley and Hancock. In 1845 they met
and agreed to develop Hancock’s patent
for a rubber insulator, which is generally
thought to be the foundation of the Gutta
Percha Company. In 1850, the year that
the submarine cable was born, the cable
also became a driver feeding the telegraph
Figure2: A
map showing
the number of
submarine cables
in operation in
Figure 3:
Coaxial cables
soon became
the norm and
replaced the older
telegraph type
cables, however
the external
cable protection
remained the
same. The
were replaced
with coaxial
communication revolution helping to
distribute information. The telegraph
passed its last and final obstacle: water.
Soon an interest in connecting Ireland to
the Britain was envisaged, and in 1852
there were three attempts, all of which
failed. However, in 1853 a connection
was successful between Port Stewart in
Scotland and Donaghadee in Northern
Ireland. This being the first cable that
actually operated lead to the desire to
connect Europe to America, and so the
idea that Ireland could connect to the US
came allot closer. Between 1857 with the
first attempt to land the trans-Atlantic
cable to the successful attempt of 1866
there was four attempts to land a cable.
The 1857 cable failed, the 1858 cable lasted
three months, the 1865 cable was lost like
the 1857 cable. However the 1866 cable
was successfully landed. The 1865 cable
was picked up and finally landed. The
1866 cable was abandoned in 1872 while
the newly connected 1865 cable was
abandoned in 1877.
During these years the submarine cables
laid between Ireland and Britain grew
with numerous landings at Blackwater, Co
Wexford; Howth, Co Dublin; Donaghadee,
Co Down; Waterville, Co Cork; Cork
Harbour, Co Cork; Whitehead, Co Antrim
and Newcastle, Co Wicklow. These new
links, 23 connections between 1852 and
1900, helped improve the communications
between the two islands which were the
pillars of the empire or the United Kingdom.
As time went on and as the British Empire
grew, so did the need for communications,
and soon there was an issue with the lack
of available copper circuits to match the
demand for communications links. New
submarine cables and new links were laid
from Britain, Ireland and France to the US,
the Africa’s and the Far East. These cables
helping spread the tentacles of power
and influence that would help shape the
societies and technological invention and
evolution across the globe and was aided
by the support from the Monarchy under
Queen Victoria.
Figure 4: The
two cable route;
the current cable
route is the one
for ScotlandNI-2 while the
previous cable
route is the
original cable
between the same
landing points
first operationally
connected in
1853, there is 136
years between the
As time went by, the engineering designs
and the increased use of the telegraph
helped make the world a smaller place. By
1900, Ireland was communicating with the
far corners of the world with information
being transmitted between people in
minutes, when a mere thirty years earlier
it would take weeks if not months for
communications via the postal system to
pass informatio. Now it was at light speed,
or telegraph speed. As soon as the 19th
century turned to the 20th century, there
was a continuation in cable landings as the
older cables were abandoned due to age,
cable damage and natural wear and tear.
With another 17 cables landed in Ireland
between 1900
and 1950. This
cope with the
increasing need
for information.
As the world
place, so was
capacity and so
yet again the submarine cable had to step
in and meet the challenge that the increase
in communication brought with it. The
number of international submarine cables
also increased in this period, as can be seen
in figure 2.
Around 1921, the first coaxial cables (see
figure 3) came into use and these slowly
began to replace the copper conductor
cables that existed as the main design.
These coaxial cables catered for a lot more
traffic, and with the aid of amplifiers they
were capable of going longer distances
with more calls per minute on the cable
which allowed for the increase in traffic
without the increase in cable installation.
However, there soon came a time
when there was no more need for new
submarine cables as there was now
capacity on the existing systems to cope
with the expansion of the communication
web across the world. There was a slight
decline just before World War II, but
during the war and after the war there
was an increase in the need to expand the
submarine cable systems to cater for the
increase in communications and the need
for increased capacity. The reason was the
fact that the war enabled new innovations
in communications. These innovations
soon became standard telecom practice
and these soon replaced the existing
communication systems. The telephone
cable systems came into their own and
soon they could cope with the increased
capacity. The coaxial cable was perfect for
the new telephone circuits and it became
the primary submarine cable design.
The expansion of communication networks
and the increase capacity being offered by
new submarine cable installations between
the 1950’s and the 1970’s continued along
with continued innovation in analogue
technology. The number of submarine
cables landed in Ireland, to meet the
increased development and communication
Figure 5: A map
of the existing
submarine cables
Ireland to the UK
and the rest of the
needs fell to about 10 cables. Ireland was
in the middle of an industrial crisis, she
led the way in agricultural technological
development while the rest of the world
followed the industrial development route.
Soon Ireland was being left behind. The
available capacity in its submarine cable
connections was more than enough to meet
its communications needs.
However, during the late seventies
there was a move towards digital
communications. This was the start of
the third communication revolution.
Analogue circuits were soon replaced
by digital circuits. The advantage of
digital communications over analogue
was obvious, the attenuation in signal
was lower, the increase in capacity and
ability to transmit more data and pack
more information into the signal was the
basis of a new communications model.
The invention of the personal computer,
digital communications and faster speeds
laid the foundation for a new industrial
and technological evolution that helped
most economies across the globe. Ireland
was no different, and soon over the next
twenty years she soon evolved into a nation
ready to meet any on the world stage. The
changing communication environment
also affected Ireland in a positive way.
The lack of communication capacity
was evident, and in 1988 the first optical
submarine cable laid between Ireland and
the UK was laid between Portmarnock, Co
Dublin and Holyhead, Wales. It was a joint
venture between Telecom Eireann and BT
and was a digital optical system. Another
one was laid in 1989 between Donaghadee,
Co Down and Portpatrick, Scotland. This
followed more or less the same route as
the first operational cable between Ireland
and the UK in 1853, see figure 4. The third
submarine cable was laid between Girvan,
Scotland and Larne, Co Antrim in 1993.
Soon another submarine cable was laid in
1994 which was also around the same time
that Ireland began to evolve as a leading
economy especially in the financial area.
As the Irish economy grew and developed
along came the 21st century and with
it came the fourth communication
revolution: broadband. The development
of broadband and its penetration into
everybody’s lives meant that the need for
more capacity was evident. The existing
operators upgraded their submarine cable
transmission systems to DWDM so that
systems could now carry 10G wavelengths
and so that, by changing the transmission
equipment, they could increase capacity
without the need to install new submarine
cables. However, this could not solve
all the problems and the need for more
submarine capacity grew. Along with the
existing operational systems, new systems
were required and as late as last year the
Kelvin project was delivered by Hibernia
bandwidth to Ireland via Northern Ireland.
Other operators have also signalled their
intention to connect Ireland and the UK
with new systems between 2010 and 2011,
which will hopefully deliver Ireland out of
the existing world financial crisis.
With this increased capacity, Ireland will
soon be able to deliver its broadband
promise and make the country a truly
digital society.
Derek Cassidy is from Dublin,
Ireland. He has worked for 17
years in the telecommunications
industry, 15 of them dealing
with optical networks and 12
years dealing with submarine networks. He
is currently leading the Optical Engineering
and Submarine technology areas which
support BT Ireland and the wider BT Global
business. He is currently a member of the IET,
IEEE, Engineers Ireland, EOS & OSA and
has Degrees in Physics, Optical Engineering,
Structural/Mechanical Engineering and
Engineering Design. He is currently studying
for his MEng and MSc.
Global Marine Systems,
Subsea Services
Our areas of expertise in the Oil & Gas Industry are, Umbilical Installation,
Decommissioning, Trenching, and Vessel & Equipment Charter.
We also deliver Inshore Project Services, such as Hull and Harbour Inspections,
as well as certain marine related Homeland Security Services. Our Subsea Training
School, located in Portland UK, is a world leader in the training and certification
for AUV operators and ROV Pilot technicians through to ROV Superintendents.
Linking Africa To The World
Need author pic & bio
Opportunities Provided By ICT Uptake Essential To Mobilising The Youth Of Africa
Figure 5: A map of the existing submarine
cables connecting Ireland to the UK and the
rest of the world.
Bran Herlihy
Courtesy of Tyco
southern and eastern Africa through the
sale of wholesale international capacity to
global networks via India and Europe, is
key to providing this access.
With an enormous capacity of 1.28 Tbps,
SEACOM is the first cable to provide
broadband to countries in east Africa.
African retail carriers can now enjoy equal
and open access to inexpensive bandwidth,
removing the international infrastructure
bottleneck and supporting economic growth.
Within Africa, South Africa, Mozambique,
Tanzania and Kenya are inter-connected via
a protected ring structure whilst additional
express fibre pairs complete the network by
linking into Marseille, France and Mumbai
in India. SEACOM has also procured fibre
capacity from Marseilles to London as part
of the network.
ith its unique set of
challenges, connecting Africa
to the rest of the world
provides an opportunity for submarine
telecommunications experts. Long reliant
on expensive satellites, Information and
Communications Technologies (ICT)
infrastructure in Africa has lagged behind
developed economies, limiting access
of African youth to global economic
opportunities. SEACOM, a privately
funded and over three quarter African
owned submarine fibre optic cable
which assists communications carriers in
Since SEACOM’s official launch on 23 July
2009, countries like Tanzania, Mozambique
and Ethiopia have seen bandwidth supply
grow by more than 1000% and 850%
respectively, while bandwidth supply in
Kenya has grown by 700%. With more and
more countries getting connected to the
rest of the world via the SEACOM system,
it is only a matter of time before we see
the direct socio-economic benefits this will
have on the entire region.
Courtesy of
Africa is a continent where 50% of its
population is under the age of 25, and it
is these younger generations that are born
with an additional gene in their DNA makeup which makes them ICT “programmed”
- A special quality that lets any child pick
up a piece of ICT equipment, sight unseen,
and have it working to its full potential
within minutes. As the African youth
become accustomed to widely available
connectivity and begin to contribute to the
Web, the next programme that is “beyond
our wildest dreams” is most likely to come
from a young African.
However, it is the access to economic
participation that increased ICT uptake
spawns that will make the difference to
a youth that is largely unemployed and
with limited levels of education. Providing
broader access is a potential catalyst to
unlocking sustainable economic and social
development. By supporting a broad range
of stakeholders to develop, create growth
and promote the continent as a real player
in the global economy via the enablement
of ICT linked opportunities will most
certainly see acceleration towards socioeconomic development.
Thus far, Africa has lagged behind
other continents in terms of information
technology infrastructure and associated
bandwidth availability. SEACOM and
other similar ventures will assist Africa to
meet its developmental needs through the
provision of cheaper and widely available
bandwidth. The reality is that increased
access to bandwidth opens up a variety
of opportunities that were previously
healthcare, education, innovation and
many other areas will be improved by the
introduction of true broadband.
The tremendous growth in mobile
communications across the continent has
been a marker of Africans’ readiness to
use technology to improve their lives. Of
course, in today’s world, ICT can only
truly be exploited through the availability
of broadband to establish effective and
efficient international communications
systems. Words such as high definition
TV, peer to peer networks, IPTV and real
internet are not that far away... in fact, it
can be a reality subject to one requirement
- the availability of affordable and plentiful
Through the provision of plentiful
bandwidth at a fraction of the previous cost,
SEACOM has opened up unprecedented
opportunities for governments, businesses
and ordinary citizens to compete globally,
drive economic growth and enhance the
quality of life across the continent.
Change brings about opportunities. The
world has already witnessed the dramatic
and countless life-altering developments
borne out of the Web. This is only the
beginning, and we often forget that whilst
businesses become more competitive
and inventive through readily available
connectivity, it is the youth who will truly
exploit the broadband and IP worlds.
“Africa’s development
trajectory will be
exponentially improved by
the provision of information
super-highways and will no
doubt form an important
building block for Africa to
build upon. Accessibility
has been the single biggest
stumbling block to creating
this reality. Yet with the
benefits of the SEACOM
cable, everyone can have
access to the world at their
fingertips, particularly the
youth who are hungry for
tools to economic mobility”,
says Brian Herlihy, CEO
To this end, it is education, and
partnerships with educational institutions
that will unlock the value that increased
access to technology provides. SEACOM’s
partnership with southern African
through TENET (Tertiary Education and
Research Network of South Africa) will
facilitate faster development by providing
subsidised international bandwidth to
research and education networks across
40 universities. These education and
research institutions have 50 times more
bandwidth for the same annual price they
paid prior to the arrival of SEACOM. This
bandwidth equals the amount available to
the entire Southern African population in
TENET owns the capacity for the
remaining life of the cable, resulting in
substantial annual savings whilst enabling
the affiliated institutions to develop
and increase their international research
collaborations and distance learning
programmes. SEACOM is also replicating
this programme in East Africa and has
already donated a STM-1 of capacity
(155Mbps) to the University of Dar Es
Salaam and hopes to provide capacity to
another 60 plus research and educational
institutes at a discounted rate.
SEACOM’s achievements show that, with
an enabling environment, the private
sector can mobilise the resources required
to deliver complex and expansive projects
for the benefit of the African people. The
SEACOM cable will change the lives
of every man, woman and child in the
countries connected by making previously
unavailable technology accessible to
Partnerships are key to SEACOM’s
continued success. Not only does the cable
link Africa to the world, but within Africa,
local service providers are the link to intercountry facilitation. SEACOM is using its
subsidiaries and local partners in each
country, who are licensed and established
to carry communication infrastructure, to
establish backhaul solutions/ last mile landbased fibre infrastructure, into landlocked
countries. By way of example, Altech, a
South African based telecommunications
company operating in East Africa and
SEACOM have taken a giant step towards
unlocking this enormous potential. The
success of SEACOM would not be possible
without infrastructure which links their
beach landing stations to metropolitan
PoPs (Point of Presence). KDN’s extensive
inland infrastructure in East Africa will
link their landing station in Mombasa to
Nairobi, and onward to Kampala and
Kigali. Connecting Ethiopia is based on the
same principle, and they will continue to
connect additional landlocked countries.
to be felt across the continent. In September
2009, MTN announced a 50% increase in
capacity for certain corporate clients in
South Africa while Telkom also announced
similar increases. More recently, on March
18 2010, MWeb a South African ‘Internet Services Provider’ (ISP) launched a new Biography Bran
uncapped ADSL offering for businesses
and consumers which is 40% cheaper than
megainfrastructure projects in
anything previously available, providing
Africa spanning a number of
South Africans with unlimited internet
access. In Kenya, Safaricom and other Bran Herlihy, CEO of SEACOM disciplines including project
has extensive experience financing
in mega­infrastructure projects governmental
in Africa spanning a number of Kenyan mobile operators have seen a Herlihy disciplines including project development, financing and governmental liaison supported by a strong understanding of African economics. liaison supported by a strong understanding
dramatic increase in 3G demand. In An American citizen, his career began in the UK in 1994 in the health waste sector before joining the of
An1999 American
of America as a Marketing Analyst in 1997. From to 2003, he worked on the Africa ONE Tanzania, TTCL announced in October Bank project where he gained valuable African experience. In 2003 he was appointed Vice President of his career began in the UK in 1994 in the
Development at Global Alumina, a large alumina refinery project in the Republic of Guinea before being 2009 that its internet prices were going appointed President of SEACOM, responsible for overseeing the fiber optic undersea cable project at the end of 2006. health waste sector before joining the Bank
down by as much as 65%.
He holds a MSc (Development Studies) and BA (Economics and Philosophy) from the London School of of America as a Marketing Analyst in 1997.
Economics and Boston College respectively. From 1999 to 2003, he worked on the Africa
In addition to the pricing impacts of
SEACOM, national carriers have realised that ONE project where he gained valuable African
they have to upgrade their networks to move experience. In 2003 he was appointed Vice
large amounts of bandwidth. For example, President of Development at Global Alumina,
a large alumina refinery project in the Republic
Kenya is building three different national
of Guinea before being appointed President of
networks, South Africa is developing four
national networks, and the government of SEACOM, responsible for overseeing the fiber
Rwanda is rolling out huge fibre networks optic undersea cable project at the end of 2006.
The impacts of SEACOM’s affordable
broadband pricing are already beginning
throughout the country. Ethiopia is now also
following the same path.
scanpartner Trondheim Foto: SPOT og Getty Images
arine depths
, Ne
xans goe deeper
At s
Erik Rynning Sales & Project Manager Offshore:
“We produced the so far world’s deepest umbilical which was
installed at 2350 metre in the Gulf of Mexico.”
Nexans was the first to manufacture
and install a 384 fibre submarine
cable. Nexans has qualified and
installed their URC-1 cable family for
fibre counts up to 384 fibres.
For further information please contact:
Nexans Norway AS
P.O. Box 6450 Etterstad
N-0605 Oslo Norway
Phone: +47 22 88 61 00
Fax: +47 22 88 61 01
Rolf Bøe
Phone: +47 22 88 62 23
E-mail: [email protected]
Oil & Gas:
Jon Seip
Phone: +47 22 88 62 22
E-mail: [email protected]
Because so much of your performance runs through cables
Global expert in cables
and cabling systems
The 40G Undersea Market Heats Up
Harald Bock
& Joe Capasso
analyst firm Infonetics, which expects that
by 2011 there will be 4.4 billion mobile
telephone users, more than 470 million
broadband subscribers and an estimated
90 million IPTV users, all of whom need a
robust transport network to accommodate
data needs.
With a majority of optical backbones and
metro core networks running at 10G channel
line rates, operators increasingly feel the
need to shift to 40G networks. However,
adding new fiber is a very expensive and
time-consuming option. This reality has
been one of the roadblocks to a smooth
migration from 10G to 40G in the past.
Ovum. “Global 40G/100G
market update: 2H09”
he 40G market is taking off, with
much of the action happening
within the undersea segment.
According to analyst firm Ovum1, network
operators spent nearly $391 million
deploying the technology, representing a
69 percent increase through the first half of
2009 versus full-year 2008. Going forward,
this growth will only continue, as Ovum
expects the 40/100G market volume to
rise 79 percent annually through 2014.
Fueling the market is the demand for
higher bandwidth, a rising proportion
of data traffic and operators’ transitions
to all-IP networks. Increasing usage of
smart devices and bandwidth-hungry
applications, such as video on demand
and IPTV, as well as the sheer number of
subscribers, are just a few of the irreversible
trends that are creating severe capacity
constraints on existing optical networks.
Corroborating this growth story is the
Now, faced with exploding bandwidth
demand, operators must evaluate and
plan for 40G deployments. Despite
its higher cost relative to 10G, 40G
provides networking benefits relative to
administering – and managing – multiple
10G streams. In addition, there have been
innovations in this space to keep rising
costs in check. One change has been the
adoption of technology used in terrestrial
systems for upgrading the transponders
in undersea links. This has significantly
driven down costs and made the market
for undersea line termination equipment
more competitive.
Admittedly, installation of submarine fiber
cables is a significant investment, with high
costs for equipment and installation using
fiber-laying ships. The costs for undersea
applications by far surpass the budget
required for a terrestrial application. For
this reason, upgrades of undersea capacity
can be done economically by upgrading
the undersea line termination equipment
at the ends of the links to higher line rates.
This enables operators to make optimum
use of the investment into the undersea
fiber plant.
Carriers continue to be guided by the need
to protect their investments in 10G and
want to reuse existing installations and
power feeds while making the move to 40G.
The optimal option is to upgrade, rather
than build anew. While considering an
upgrade, carriers have different strategies
that, in turn, dictate different technology
options. Either way, whether the plan is to
keep 10G channels running alongside 40G
or upgrading 10G sequentially
to 40G, the idea is to minimize
disruptions in traffic and leverage
the embedded infrastructure.
One challenge of increasing
channel line rates is the distortions
a channel experiences when
transmitted through a fiber over
long distances (i.e. thousands
of kilometers) unrepeated. As
the speed increases by a factor
of four, so do these distortions.
In the past, this has necessitated
putting Dispersion Compensating
Modules (DCMs) at the beginning
and end of each link, often for
different bands of wavelengths or
even each individual channel – a
highly inconvenient option.
The industry, however, has much
to look forward to. Currently,
advanced transmission formats
based on coherent detection are
becoming available, enabling
transmission systems without
the costly and time-consuming
compensation at the beginning
and end of the link, as well as
the fiber measurement
Besides this challenge, which is
caused by the new line rate itself, the
performance of the 40G channels can
be impacted if the operator wants
to simultaneously run existing 10G
channels. This effect needs to be
mitigated by the choice of a suitable
40G modulation format or other
measures, such as a larger wavelength
gap between 10G and 40G channels.
For upgrades from 40G to 100G, this
effect is not present because 40G and
100G use similar modulation schemes.
Nokia Siemens Networks is ready
to meet the network technology
growth needs with a new solution:
its SURPASS hiT 7300 40G coherent
detection transponder. This latest
addition to the 40G product portfolio
supports 40G transmission over
fiber dating back to the 1980’s and
earlier. It fully utilizes the builtup capacity, protecting operators’
initial investments. In addition, the
transponder is seamlessly integrated
into Nokia Siemens Networks’ hiT
7300 dense wavelength division
multiplexing (DWDM) portfolio and
will be available for trials in the third
quarter of 2010.
Another development in this space is that
undersea cable links increasingly require
switching compatibility with terrestrial
systems. With the rising proportion of
data traffic, the landing site equipment
requirements can range from Internet
switches and routers to optical switching
and modems.
Nokia Siemens Networks’ latest addition
to its optical portfolio, the hiT 7100 OTN
switch, also targets this space. Offering
multiple benefits to operators, including
efficient usage of network resources, multiservice support with a single platform,
smooth network migration through
support of SDH/SONET switching and
interfaces and enhanced Ethernet and
packet/Multiprotocol Label Switching
(MPLS) functionality, the scalable switch
supports capacity from 1.2 Tera bytes per
second (Tbps) up to 24 Tbps with the hiT
7100 switch granularity at ODU0. With
this capacity, it is well-suited to support
the increasing capacity requirements at
the landing sites of undersea installations.
Operators can achieve significant savings
through the integration of the hiT 7100
into Nokia Siemens Networks’ SURPASS
hiT 7300 DWDM platform to create a
single network element that fills the gap
between optical layer switching and other
existing switching platforms. Generalized
multiprotocol label switching (GMPLS),
which currently is being used in Nokia
products, will also become part of a single
control plane encompassing hiT 7300 and
hiT 7100 products.
Carriers continue
to be guided by the
need to protect their
investments in 10G and
want to reuse existing
installations and power
feeds while making the
move to 40G.
In conjunction with a data control plane
using a multiprotocol label switching
transport profile (MPLS-TP), and the
optical data unit control plane, GMPLS
will mesh a seamless network of services
generating OPEX and CAPEX savings for
the customer. GMPLS will provide ease in
end-to-end set up of connections, whether
it is a packet-based circuit (MPLS-TP) or
frame-based circuit (OTN).
GMPLS also will assist in operations,
administration and maintenance of
individual circuits on both platforms
and provide provisioning automation,
protection and resiliency in a combined
multi-layer network. As an example a
gigabit Ethernet (GbE) service originating
on an access hiT 7300 shelf will be routed
to a hub location where the GbE circuit
will be channelized into a higher order
optical data unit at the hiT 7300, which will
generate a label switched path transported
over a hiT 7300 long-haul network and
dropped off to an access node at another
All of this end-to-end provisioning will
occur automatically over the hiT 7300 and
hiT 7100 via GMPLS tunnels. Each node
in the GMPLS network will be aware of
every other node and all of the traffic that
is running between them. GMPLS extends
signaling and routing in a frame-based
network and the hiT 7300 and hiT 7100
systems will use this protocol efficiently,
since Nokia Siemens Networks’ GMPLS
control plane and data plane are technology
and bit-rate agnostic. The OTN switch
and the DWDM system common control
plane will generate alternate paths in case
of failures on a working path. Switching
will occur in milliseconds, assisting the
customer with significant savings both
from a time and money perspective.
positioned to ride the 40G wave to be a
driving a force in building the ecosystem
for 100G technology.
While the industry is witnessing mass
scale deployments of 40G, some experts
say we are not far away from 100G either.
However, as Ovum suggests, 40G is a
necessary stepping stone to 100G. In fact,
the transition from 10G to 40G simplifies
the future execution of 100G line rates.
In addition, the company can leverage
technology from its commercially available
40G solution to upgrade to 100G without
a major network reinvestment, helping
operators get a jump start in the 100G
market, too. No matter how you look at it,
Nokia Siemens Networks is committed to
deliver the highest capacity connectivity
to a demanding customer base.
Against this backdrop, Nokia Siemens
Networks finds itself in an advantageous
position. With a 30 percent share of the
40G unit line card shipments market for
the 3Q08-2Q09 period, the company is
already reaping the benefits of an early
start in the technology. It started 40G
research in the 1990’s, was the first vendor
to undertake a mass rollout of optical 40G
technology as early as 2006 and is well
End-user demand for bandwidth will
only continue to rise, making operators’
need to upgrade their networks to 40G
and beyond essential. For this reason,
now is the time to evaluate network needs
and begin planning to upgrade. This
advance planning will ensure operators’
ability to provide their customers with
the experiences they seek, before capacity
demands reach a boiling point.
Track the cableships online at
Powered by
Harald Bock works in
Product Management Optical
Networks for Nokia Siemens
Networks. Since receiving his
PHD in Physics in 1998, he
has held positions in optical
engineering, system design as well as sales of
transport network products. Harald Bock has
been working for NSN since 2007.
Joe Capasso is a solutions
manager with Nokia Siemens
Networks based in Iselin,
NJ. He has more than 20
years of experience in the
optical communications field,
including R&D and product management
roles for both terrestrial and undersea fiber
optic transmission systems.
Back Reflection
Images courtesy of
The Optical Era
Japanese Submarine Cables Part 3
Japan consists of four large islands, Honshu, the
main land, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku along
with around 4,000 smaller islands. Because of this,
submarine cables play an important role in Japan’s
Therefore, it was not surprising that Japan became
the first country in the world to implement
submarine fibre technology commercially. By
connecting optical fibre submarine cables to optical
fibre land cables, it quickly built up a backbone
network which stretched 4,500km from Asahikawa
in Hokkaido to Okinawa in the South.
The first commercial, repeatered, optical submarine
system deployed anywhere in the world was a
Japanese domestic system owned by NTT. FS-400M
was 300km long and was laid in 1986 by Kuroshio
Maru between Hachinohe and Tomakomai, thus
connecting Honshu and Hokkaido. The OCC
supplied cable contained 6 single mode fibres and
the system contained 7 NEC Repeaters; operating
at 1,310nm, 400Mb/s; 445.837mB and a Line Code
10B1C RZ. The PFE was double end feed @ 1.8A.
The first international repeatered system involving
Japanese technology was TPC – 3, which was
installed in 1988 and went into service in 1989.
Segments AC and BC of the system were supplied
by Stewart Ash & Kaori Shikinaka
by Japanese companies, they included OCC cable
containing 6 single mode fibres (Seg AC 2,220km;
Seg BC 1,531km) as well as Fujitsu and NEC
repeaters, operating at 1,310nm, 280Mb/s with a
Line Code 24B1F.
factured equipment for these segments comprised
OCC cable, repeaters of Fujitsu and NEC, and a
number of Mitsubishi repeater amplifier units in
OCC housings; the terminal equipment was supplied by Fujitsu, NEC and Toshiba.
In 1992, repeater development in Japan moved
from regenerating technology to optical amplification. Deep (6,000m) water sea trials of the new
repeater designs were carried out before they went
into full production. The first optical amplified
submarine system to go into commercial service,
anywhere in the world, was a 900km domestic
linking Kagoshima in Kyushu with Okinawa. This
system owned by NTT, commenced manufacture
in 1994 and was completed in 1995.
By the mid 1990’s Japan was a leading supplier of
submarine optical fibre technology, a position it has
maintained through the development of 10Gbit/s
line rates, WDM and DWDM technologies up to
the present day. This was further demonstrated at
SubOptic 2010 by presentations on the emerging
40Gbit/s and 100GBits/s coherent technology.
Clearly, Japan has been a major pioneer in the
development of fibre optic submarine cable systems
and remains a major influence in the development
of our industry today. Fujitsu and NEC, along with
OCC, remain among the world’s leading suppliers
of submarine systems; KDDI and the NTT group
are unquestionably influential system operators,
and KCS and NTT WEM are leading marine service
providers. In addition, our industry has benefited
greatly from the technological innovation and
products provided by such companies as Fujikura,
Furukawa, Hitachi and Sumitomo. One hundred
and forty years on from its first exposure to
submarine cables, Japan is critical to the future of
the submarine cable industry.
The first international optical amplified system in
the world was the long haul system TPC-5 and the
Japanese industry played a significant part in its
construction. TPC-5 is a ring system connecting
Japan, North America, Hawaii and Guam. The laying operation commenced in November 1993 with
the landing of the cable in Ninomiya Japan. The total system length was some 24,500km and the final
splice was not completed until August 1996. KDDI-SCS laid Segments T2 (Ninomiya – Miyazaki),
Segment I (Miyazaki – Guam) and part of Segment
J (Ninomiya - Bandon), a total of 5,900km. These
were completed in October 1994, February 1995
and May 1996 respectively. The Japanese manu-
Subsea Capacity Issues
Between China and U.S.
Xu Yewei
34& Zhu Hongda
n recently years, globalization and
emerging technology led to an
explosive spread of Internet with
presence of media, finance, politics,
etc. Driven by the radical change of
international telecommunication business,
the construction of submarine system
has again entered a rapid growth stage.
Especially for China, as a key player in
global economy and with 20.8% of world’s
Internet users, the need of higher capacity
and more secured submarine system has
been aggravated along with the integration
to global networking.
On December 26, 2006, two consecutive
earthquakes with a preliminary magnitude
of 7.0 and centered about 10 miles (15
kilometers) south of Taiwan caused
the severance of key submarine cables.
By cutting over interrupted circuits to
unaffected submarine, it took more than a
month for all services fully recovered. The
earthquake didn’t cause fatal problems to
international communications during the
holiday season; however, the earthquake
did give a remarkable alert to Asian
telecommunication industry that had
been over dependent on sole information
source since long.
In 2008, Typhoon MoraKot battered
Taiwan. Six submarine cables, including
FNAL/RNAL were damaged. 100G
bandwidth gap of connections in between
China, U.S. and Europe was generated due
to the fracture of submarine cables. On
August 17, a large scale of users reported
problems of failure to log on MSN (instant
messaging software). Meanwhile, Yahoo
and other foreign websites also appeared to
have a slower access speed. A large amount
of Private IP and Private Line customers
with traffic between the United States and
China suffered unexpected interruption as
a result of the submarine fracture.
Before year 2008, China connected
to the world mainly through SMW3,
submarine systems at Beijing, Shanghai,
Guangzhou and Hong Kong.
Before TPE was put into service, other
than CUCN, the majority of the submarine
cable systems between China and the U.S.
were first through Asia-Pacific systems,
such as APCN2 and EAC, inter-connected
at Japan, and then through Trans-Pacific
systems, such as PC1 and Japan US, to
the U.S. This kind of network will cause
long latency, and at the same time, the
similar routes also led to catastrophic
destruction on submarine cable systems by
earthquakes, typhoons and other natural
In 2006, six operators including China
Telecom and China Unicom signed an
agreement to jointly invest 500 million U.S.
dollars to build a direct Trans-Pacific cable
system (TPE) between China and U.S. The
project completed before the 2008 Beijing
Olympic Games. It has now become an
important communication between the U.S.
and arteries. China Unicom expanded the
EAC submarine cable to Qingdao landing
station, which made Qingdao become
the only major international submarine
cable landing station in northern China.
It not only shortened the latency of the
international submarine cable circuits, but
also provided the physical route diversity
of the submarine cable landing to avoid
nature disasters. Qingdao landing station
has successfully completed important
international communication tasks for the
2008 Olympic Games. In the meantime,
Asia Netcom and PacficCrossing also
made investments to expand and upgrade
their submarine systems.
All international carriers are expected to
achieve diversity route of international
communications for maximum security by
adjusting their submarine cable networks.
The investment in construction of
submarine cables has been more cautious
after recent Taiwan earthquakes. Taiwan’s
status in the international submarine
cables has been gradually weakened. The
major submarine cable operators have
diversified routes to avoid earthquake
zone, including Taiwan.
cable operators in the Pacific are gradually
building the transition from ring to mesh.
For international communication network
security, changing a single submarine
cable transmission to multi-directional
and multi-channel is necessary.
With the fact that submarine resource
is getting richer and richer, products
of international telecommunication are
being diversified while not compromising
on quality. To bring a more secured
communication network, multi-routing
turns to be the best approach of hedging
risk from unexpected interruptions; while,
route optimization can lower latency,
which is requested by financial industry
for synchronized data services. At this
point, carriers should be more focused
on resource allocation and instructions
for exigency. The general approach
of submarine system design includes
three aspects, a self-protected network;
QoS based exigency instructions; and
International carrier cooperation.
Xu Yewei is the Director of
allocation of submarine resources to vest
the network with capability to restore
affected business circuits by using backup
channels when there is an emergency
caused by submarine system.
in communications filed in 1997 after
QoS based exigency instructions. When
there is an exigency, carriers should
provide protections for the most important
business circuits based on QoS hierarchy.
building China Netcom International Gateway
Cooperate with foreign carrier for purchase
and replacement of submarine resources as
a temporary measure to dispatch exigency.
and daily maintenance.
Technical Support & Network
Operation for China Unicom
Americas. She began working
graduated from Xidian University. Served as
senior project manager for the international
communications network construction in
China Netcom since 2000. Led and participated
in many international network projects such as
and C2C submarine cable Nanhui landing
station. Currently in charge of China Unicom
Americas network construction, optimization
Zhu Hongda is Engineer of
Technical Support & Network
Operation for China Unicom
Americas. He holds an MBA
from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Bachelor
of Electronic Engineering from Shanghai
Jiao Tong University; currently serving as
Network Engineer at China Unicom.
Feed The Need:
The Explosive Demand For Undersea Technologies!
he arrival of the SEACOM cable gave us just a taste of the
possibilities presented by sub-optic cables. But are you aware
of what is happening in the African submarine sector? How
will you ensure that your strategies are effective enough to ensure
the long term survival of your business? Many businesses are
unsure if they will be able to keep up with the demand for capacity
at a low price.
Does your sub-optic strategy lack spark? You need to know that
the strategies you have in place are effective enough to pull you
through the boom and bust cycles when the excitement about
connectivity wanes. If you do this, you will ensure your company’s
long term growth.
Do you need ideas and case studies to learn from? We have
assembled speakers from major players including Seacom, WIOCC,
Dark Fibre Africa, Orange, France, Neotel, Kenya Data Networks
and the Main One Cable Company to help you attain success.
If you answered yes to any of these questions you need to be at
Submarine Networks World Africa 2010. Put your company on
centre stage at Submarine Networks World Africa! Act now or you
will lose out on this fantastic business opportunity. We have the
solution for you.
Register now for Submarine Networks
World Africa 2010 by going to www.
Imagine what you could do for your
business if you are there. Imagine what
MORE you could achieve if your whole
team is there!
The world is so excited about Africa’s
potential. Grab your opportunity to
capitalise on the interest in Africa.
Undersea cables have introduced an
exciting new era. Learn from the successful
industry leaders at this conference and
ride your wave of opportunity. Submarine
Networks World Africa 2010 is the big
picture event uniquely concerned with
providing insight into how to capitalise
on the abundant opportunities in Africa’s
emerging market.
Five reasons why you’ll benefit from
being there:
1. Discover the latest innovations in the
sub-optics sector, helping you improve
your profits
2. Get ahead using the knowledge on the
latest trends and growth opportunities
in the African continent
3. Align your company with the world’s
best & expand your market
4. Network with the people who will
make a difference to your organisation’s
bottom line & grow your customer base
5. Tap into the growing opportunities
presented by the sub-optics sector
Hear from industry leaders and get ahead
from the insight provided by:
• Olivier Noele, Sector Lead: Information
International Finance Corporation,
South Africa
• Raynald Leconte, President: France
Telecom Marine, Orange, France
• Chris Wood, CEO, West Indian Ocean
Cable Company (WIOCC), Kenya
• Aidan Baigrie, Head of Business Development,
Seacom, Mauritius
• Taj Onigbanjo, Head of Middle East & Africa,
Cable & Wireless, United Kingdom
• Diarmid Massey, Vice President of Carrier Sales,
Cable & Wireless, United Kingdom
• Thierry Tomiet, Regional Director: Middle East &
Africa, Telecom Italia Sparkle, Italy
• Annie Kithima, Head of International Relations,
Vodacom, Democratic Republic of Congo
Limited offer!
Save up to R3898
per delegate
until 23 April 2010
Hear from
12 - 15 July 2010
Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa
Raynald Leconte
President: France Telecom
Orange, France
• Kai Wulff, CEO, Kenya Data Networks, Kenya
Thierry Tomiet
Regional Director: Middle East
& Africa
Telecom Italia Sparkle, Italy
Opportunity, innovation and strategy for operators,
telcos and investors
Aidan Baigrie
Head of Business Development
Find out where the industry stands and what is headlining the activities of the key players
including Seacom, Kenya Data Networks and WIOCC
How will the rising need for capacity meet demand?
Act now or lose this business opportunity.
Register online at
submarineza to secure your seat. Also follow
event updates on Twitter
submarineworld We look forward to meeting you
at Africa’s premier sub-optics conference. Book
your space early and save up to R3898! For more
Uncover the latest developments in this exciting industry
Explore the demand drivers and their impact on new technologies
Why is there a renewed scramble to get a piece of Africa?
Chris Wood
West Indian Ocean Cable
Company (WIOCC), Kenya
Find out what opportunities are presented by bridging the digital divide
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c I would like to attend – please register me
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Voucher code: A1 101209
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Lowest Latency Connectivity
To South America Takes Center Stage
Erick Contag
outh America is becoming a hot, emerging financial marketplace,
and on course for even more growth in the near-term future.
The region has an expansive geographical footprint, densely
populated in many areas. More so, it’s home to an active financial
trading community, now gaining traction for global investors.
In May 2008, the São Paulo Stock Exchange (Bovespa) and the Brazilian
Mercantile and Futures Exchange (BM&F) merged, creating BM&F
Bovespa. According to the company, the merger created one of the
largest exchanges in the world in terms of market value, the second
largest in the Americas, and the leading exchange in Latin America.
Today it is the world’s third largest stock exchange with offices in
New York, Shanghai and London and fourth largest exchange in the
Americas in terms of market capitalization.
Notably, since the merger in 2008, the stock market has had quite a
volatile run – until recently. In early 2010, the stock market’s recovery
inspired companies to reconsider how they conduct business. With
more dependency on technology, particularly for trading transactions
and connectivity to global exchanges, global financial institutions must
become savvier about how they buy their network connectivity. They
can no longer base buying decisions solely on getting from A to Z at a
low cost. Financial companies must seek network providers that can
offer quality, low latency and redundant connections – ensuring their
financial transactions will be processed with the speed and accuracy
demanded by their business.
Increased Bandwidth Demand; Increased Carrier Opportunities
Not only is Brazil an emerging financial market, according to, the Brazilian economy as a whole is expected to
grow 6.1% due to a large number of global
organizations setting up offices in the region.
As a result the international data solutions
required to connect these offices is expected to
grow 70% through 2014.
With exchanges like BM&F Bovespa in São Paulo
taking center stage, more banks and brokerages
are migrating south for global trading requiring
telecom carriers specialized in the support
of financial transactions. To be competitive
carriers need to be able to offer unique solutions
to interconnect their customers’ offices in São
Paulo, to major metropolitan cities in North
America like New York, Chicago and Toronto.
Given the growth opportunities,
understand the requirements of
the financial organizations and
offer the lowest latency services, as
the speed of data communications
Wall Street
Average lowest round
trip latencies of 115 ms
for Wall Street, NY to
Bovespa, Brazil
Network availability
measured in excess of 99.99%
Never had a subsea cable outage
Two tandem-connected, SDH self
healing rings provide immediate
internal restoration
services can mean millions – gained
or lost for their customers.
All Major
Phone: +1.561.314.0500
[email protected]
Think Beyond Price
Often times, carriers make buying network
service decisions solely based on price.
Many carriers and end users assume that
‘all networks are created equal’ – that low
latency and reliability are a given in this
market, and ultimately the difference from
one network provider to another is simply
the price of the service. Often for a fraction
of the cost more, financial networks could
be transacting trades via a faster, low
latency data pipe, increasing their overall
profit margins and directly impacting their
core business.
Simply stated, it’s not just the price, it’s the
quality, route, redundancy and of course,
the lowest latency. Carriers and end users
opting for the lowest cost provider could
end up paying more in the long-run,
particularly if low latency is not a key factor
in their decision process. When working
with network providers on mission critical
communications like financial trading,
carries should ask the service provider
to offer proof of the network latency
from point to point. Although many
organizations are still feeling the effects of
a down economy, the potential money lost
on such transactions because of potential
latency issues could negatively impact
the overall business and ultimately loose
far more money than that of the original
circuit costs.
Selecting the Right Network for Mission
Critical Communications
In 2010, 33 companies headquartered
in Brazil appeared on the Forbes top
2000 global company list (www.forbes.
com). This is a strong indicator of the
region’s ability to sustain global business
development, a trend that GlobeNet, an
international wholesale carrier offering
connectivity between North and South
America, has anticipated by investing in
a seamless solution of Clear Channel Data
providing low latency connectivity of less
than115ms between BM&F Bovespa in São
Paulo, Brazil to Wall Street in New York
City, USA. Additionally, the company is
launching its international IP network in
Q3 and will offer the most comprehensive
IP network for point-to-point VPN in more
than 20 cities of Brazil.
international data solutions.
With a
healthy, burgeoning economy in Brazil,
companies are growing and businesses are
attracted to the region – driving more data
communication requirements between
Brazil and the rest of the world. However,
there are still a finite number of providers
that can provide high quality, low latency
connectivity between North America and
South America, particularly required by
the global financial community. With
BM&F Bovespa as the third largest
financial exchange in the world, low
latency connectivity to the region is critical.
The ability to transact stocks in real time is
an absolute necessity for global financial
GlobeNet offers both a regional knowhow and global connectivity. As a highavailability (default of 99.99%), low latency
submarine cable network provider between
United States, Bermuda, Brazil, Venezuela,
and now Colombia, GlobeNet offers an
optimal solution for carriers assuring
secure connectivity for its carrier clients’
mission-critical business operations.
Since 2002, the GlobeNet system has not
had a subsea cable outage. This is an
incredible statistic that highlights the
company’s diligent and proactive servicing
and maintenance of its submarine cables
and its dedication to high performance
networking. It is this critical reliability
that financial networks require from its
carrier vendors.
GlobeNet’s network enables global
companies to connect to key global
markets, such as BM&F Bovespa in São
Paulo. The submarine network availability
measures upwards of 99.99%. And for
companies that require connectivity to
some of the world’s leading financial
exchanges, guaranteed round-trip latency
is also provided.
or breaks a trading house, especially in
today’s global financial climate. As South
America steps into center page, and as
carriers become more competitive to bid
for financial network services, especially
heading south, carriers must partner with a
provider that offers lower latency routing,
99.99% reliability, a regional know-how
and all the right global connections.
Erick Contag brings over
20 years of sales, marketing,
management expertise to
GlobeNet, a wholly owned subsidiary of the
Oi (formerly Brasil Telecom), that provides
the lowest latency, international capacity
services to the Americas. Mr. Contag has been
responsible for managing C-level relationships
projects for start-up enterprises through large
multi-national and Global 100 companies. He
has proven success in starting, building, and
turn-around of high-tech businesses.
In many cases, it is the latency that makes
On Issue #50
Hello Wayne,
50th – I can’t wait to
congratulate you on the
100th. Perhaps I’ll see
you at SubOptic!
Just a short note of
congratulation on the 50th
issue – well done. Look
forward to seeing you at
Best regards,
Nicholas Koopalethes
Best Wishes
Nigel Bayliff
We engineer telecoms... anywhere
International Cable
Protection Committee
1-3 June 2010
Submarine Networks World Africa 2010
12-15 July 2010
Johannesburg, South Africa
Submarine Networks World 2010
12-14 October 2010
Offshore Communications World
28-29 September 2010
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Pacific Telecommunications Council
16-19 January 2011
Honolulu, Hawaii
Letter to a
Letter to my Japanese friend,
I am writing you just before my trip to your country for
SubOptic 2010, and I feel excited! My target is nothing less
than to finally understand these "inscrutable Japanese."
I have spent a good part of my professional life dealing
with Japan while trying to find the key of the mystery.
This is probably my last chance. If Yokohama brings me
the light I am looking for, I’ll let you know.
Why doesn't Japan play more globally in the submarine
cable business? During the past 20 years, ASN and Tyco
captured the lion share (80%) of the business, leaving a
meager portion to the Japanese industry. This is despite
some very good cards in hands: a great submarine
cable history, a favorable geographical position, first
class technology, good companies, dedicated people,
a highly populated and wealthy region, and an Asiacentric market. As soon as a project is a bit far away from
their islands, the Japanese suppliers are either absent or
unaggressive. Even in Asia-Pacific, they often show-up in
consortium or as subcontractor. This remark also applies
to the Japanese operators who do not seem to have global
ambitions. Everybody is actively involved in Africa at
this moment, but not the Japanese.
I've often told you, my friend, that Japan should work
out a single supplier solution in order to compete on
equal footing against ASN and Tyco. The NEC-Fujitsu
competition seems to concentrate all their efforts, energy
and attention. Like all family conflicts, such situations
shift rapidly from "brotherly" to "fratricide!" And the
"others" only need to play with this situation, bringing
their own fuel to the fire. You did agree that this domestic
competition was detrimental to Japan, but you keep
telling me that there is no solution.
by Jean Devos
There are probably deeper factors behind this, and the
probably lies somewhere in the Japanese culture. Japan is
an island subject to heavy storms, earthquakes and other
natural threats. Success is never sure, and tomorrow can be
worse. Everything is fragile and ephemeral, so the priority
is to survive in "my" little field of rice! "Asu no hyaku
yori, kyou ga fuku," similar to the French saying "Un tiens
vaut mieux que deux tu l’auras." In other words, "better
50 today than 100 tomorrow." Is that an A more subtle
thought comes to me from a book I read several times
in English with great pleasure: Snow Country by Yasunari
Kawabata. With pleasure, but with the strange feeling
that what needs to be understood is not obvious, but is
somewhere between the lines. Snow country refers to the
western part of Japans’ central mountains–the snowiest
region in the world. It suggests life divorced from time
through the long snowbound months. The author is in
the line of the haiku masters, these tiny seventeen-syllable
poems that seek to convey a sudden awareness of beauty
by a mating of opposite or incongruous terms. He keeps
mixing motion and stillness such as "the roaring silence
of a winter night."
I got it! The Japanese submarine cable industry is living
in the "snow country," addressing the global market in a
"slow rush," being satisfied with a "meager abundance."
I look forward to the key-note speech by the honorary Dr.
Yoshio Utsumi, whose title attracted my attention "The
inscrutable Japanese." I am reading in the SubOptic
program, "It is often difficult for foreigners to understand
Japanese people and society, without first having a basic
knowledge of Japan and its culture…The submarine
cable telecom business, have players from many diverse
cultural, political, and ethnic backgrounds. So it is hoped
that Mr. Utsumi’s presentation will not only be interesting
and stimulating, but it may help some participants to
adapt their approach in international business to achieve
greater success.”
My dear friend, I sincerely hope that Dr. Utsumi will
explain to you how you should "adapt your approach of
the international business to achieve greater success."
p.s. Yokohama May 15–Mr. Utsumi confirmed that the
Japanese culture is the root of the problem. Japan needs to
find a way to be competitive in this time of globalisation,
but it is going to be extremely difficult.
Advertisers Index
ISSN 1948-3031
Global Marine Systems
Huawei Marine Networks
November: Defense & Non-traditional
Cable Systems
Submarine Networks World Africa
Advertising enquiries:
WFN Strategies
Issue Themes:
January: Regional Outlook
March: Finance & Legal
May: Subsea Capacity
July: Subsea Technology
September: Offshore Energy
Sales Coordinator
Kristian Nielsen
Tel: +1 (703) 444-0845
Email: [email protected]
Sales Representative,
Europe & AFRICA
Wilhelm Sicking
Tel: 0201-779861
Email: [email protected]
Sales Representative,
North & Central America
Ben Skidmore
Tel: +1 (972) 587-9064
Email: [email protected]
Sales Representative,
Asia Pacific
Michael Yee
Tel: +65 9616 8080
Email: [email protected]
Copyright © 2010 WFN Strategies
Episode 5: Global Marine Systems
by Kevin G. Summers
y entire staff is in Japan
attending SubOptic 2010, and
here I am back in Virginia,
finalizing SubTel Forum #51 and taking
care of my pregnant wife. It's been quite
a couple of weeks leading up to the
conference, and in spite of the looming
deadline for this issue, it's nice to slow
down just a bit.
We spent several
weeks preparing
our marketing
to Brian Fenton who won an iPod Touch,
and to Chris Butler, Takalani Tshivhase,
and Fabian Vergara who won iTunes gift
SubOptic. Can
cards after completing our spring survey
relate to that?
The brochures had to be printed, the
artwork for the displays finalized, the
posters sent to the sign shop, and finally
the swag had to be ordered.
Once everything had arrived, then came
the collating, inserting, packaging, and my
personal favorite: trying to figure out how
to transport all this stuff to Yokohama.
Should we ship it and risk our materials
getting caught up in Customs? Or should
we load down our engineers with 75 lbs of
marketing materials apiece? As I watched
Guy Arnos cramming closed the lid of a
suitcase, I knew we made the right choice.
Did you attend SubOptic? If so, have
you been able to solve the wire puzzle
we placed in the attendee bags? Did you
drop your card at our booth an register to
win an iPod Touch? The winner will be
announced in Issue #52 in July.
As always, thanks for reading SubTel
Forum. Because of our readers, we can
proudly proclaim the we are the Voice of
the Industry.
We only had one item get lost in transit: a
SubTel Forum pop-up banner. I wish you
could have seen it; it was a great banner,
possibly the most eye catching banner
of all-time. Unfortunately, the airline
misplaced it. Maybe we should have
shipped everything afterall.
What do you think? Click on the Letter To The Editor icon and drop me a line. I’d love to hear from you.