Pentagon orders subsea cable system from Xtera

26 September 2017 | Alan Burkitt-Gray


Subsea cable company Xtera has won a second order to build a cable for the US military.

The order comes from the Pentagon’s Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), but the agency and the company do not specify how long the cable is, nor where it will run.

Robert Richardson, Xtera’s founder and chief sales officer, said: “This award validates the effectiveness of our core submarine turnkey solution offering, utilising high-capacity subsea repeater technology, as well as the proficiency of our expert professional team.”

The cable “is designed to deliver high-capacity at the lowest cost per terabit per second”, said the company.

This is Xtera’s second announced order from DISA. In June 2014 the company said it would build a 1,500km cable for the agency’s Defense Information System Network, to operate in its Southern Command area, which is based in Miami.

DISA, a part of the Department of Defense that operates from Fort Meade, Maryland, gives no information at all about where the latest cable will be installed, nor when it will be in service. Fort Meade is also home to the National Security Agency, the Central Security Service and the US Cyber Command.

Xtera said it “will deploy a full turnkey subsea system, including undersea optical repeaters”, and noted that its high bandwidth undersea amplifiers for field-deployed units can carry up to 40Tbps on a single fibre pair.