Emerald plans low latency Atlantic system

06 December 2011 | Guy Matthews


Emerald Networks has announced plans for what it claimed will be the highest capacity submarine cable on the transatlantic route when it launches in the spring of 2013.

The company said a new low latency, high capacity cable system is now essential in order to meet increasing high density data requirements between the US and Europe.

Emerald has appointed investment bank Jefferies & Company Inc to raise the $300 million it believes will be necessary to finance the project. The 5,200km network will, said Emerald, be the first across the Atlantic with a transmission rate of 100Gbps per channel.

“With an expected latency of less than 62 milliseconds round trip from New York to London, Emerald Express will be one of the fastest networks across the Atlantic,” said Ray Sembler, CEO of Emerald Networks.

“The last of the [existing] transatlantic cables were installed back in 2003, as a result transatlantic demand is expected to outstrip capacity by 2015. This new capacity will handle current, and more importantly, future demand faster, and will disrupt the aging transatlantic fibre systems and bring a new super information highway.”

The cable will connect Shirley in Long Island, New York, with Belmullet on the West Coast of Ireland, and have a branching unit to Grindavik in Iceland, offering a diversified and secure connection between the financial markets of New York and London.

“The Emerald Networks route triangulates the Atlantic and capitalises on the proximity to New York, Iceland's competitive location and hydro and geothermal renewable resources, and Ireland's strategic location, accessible government and attractive tax laws,” added Sembler.

Analyst firm TeleGeography has said it expects the demand for transatlantic capacity to increase nearly nine-fold between 2010 and 2017.