Hibernia Networks launches transatlantic cable

Hibernia Networks has announced that its Hibernia Express cable – the first transatlantic route in over 12 years – is ready for service.

The 4,600km long cable is said to deliver the highest performance network service and lowest latency across the Atlantic with under 60 milliseconds latency for some roundtrip applications between New York and London.

The 6-fibre-pair cable provides optical transport services of up to 100Gbps, and even 200Gbps on select segments. Utilising a dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) platform, the company claims the cable is engineered to potentially scale up to 400Gbps per circuit and beyond.

The company has achieved 59.5 milliseconds latency and will continue tests on the cable over the next few days to see much lower it can get, said Bjarni Thorvardarson, Hibernia Networks CEO at a press conference. 

According to Thorvardarson, the cable is laid out on a line following the curvature of the earth. "We followed a great circle route, which involved a mix of deep and shallow water. Normally, you want to avoid shallow water, but we were able to plough the cable [into the seabed] as deep as 2.5 metres with new ploughing equipment that hadn’t been available for this kind of cable before," Thorvardarson explained.

Demand for bandwidth between North America and Europe is expected to increase 40% annually over the next six years driven by the surge in cloud computing, large data transfer and storage requirements, according to the Telegeography

Hibernia Networks said the cable will benefit customers in the financial markets, media and broadcast industries, as well as web-centric companies and other telecoms service providers. Microsoft and Zayo Group signed on to the Hibernia Express in May 2015. 

In 2013, Hibernia Networks was forced to suspend work on the cable following growing tensions between the US and China over issues surrounding cyber security. Itresumed work on the cable in July 2014

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