Marea subsea cable arrives in Spain

19 June 2017 | Natalie Bannerman

Facebook, Microsoft and Telxius's 6,600km Marea subsea cable has landed at Sopelana, Spain.

The high speed 6,600km Marea subsea cable linking the USA and Europe, has arrived at Arritera Beach in the Basque town of Sopelana. Belonging to Facebook, Microsoft and Telxius, Telefónica’s subsea division, Marea is now the highest capacity subsea cable to ever cross the Atlantic, consisting of eight fibre pairs and a design capacity of up to 160Tbps.

Speaking on the arrival of the cable, Telxius chief operations officer, Rafael Arranz said: "This is an historic occasion and the result of many years' work", and that thanks to this project "Spain is the anchor point for one of the most important underwater cables in the world".

The project sees Facebook, Microsoft and Telxius, working together in the design, construction and deployment of the subsea cable which provides high speed, reliable connections to the cloud and online services for their customers.

Telxius said the cable has been designed with openness in mind and is interoperable with a variety of different network equipment. In doing so, there are lower overall costs and upgrades can be completed with ease. The system can also evolve in line with optical technology innovation, something which is crucial in order to meet growing customer needs.

At the anchoring ceremony Facebook spokesman Kevin Salvadori reiterated the company's desire for a "more open and connected" world, in which people can share "experiences in any corner of the world".

Frank Rey operations director at Microsoft, pointed out that "our daily lives depend on the internet" and the new cable with aid in "speeding up connections", he went so far as to say: "It is a new milestone in Internet infrastructures."

He also highlighted the "unique" and "excellent" relationship with Telefónica that has made the Marea project possible. He added: "We can make the global Internet grow, make these networks more profitable and the world a more open place."

Telxius will act as operator of the system, selling capacity as part of their existing infrastructure wholesale business. Construction is due to be completed by August 2017, and there are plans in the future to extend the cable into the Near East, Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Topics: Facebook, Microsoft, Telxius, Telefónica, Marea, Spain, USA, subsea, cable