New submarine system between Australia, New Zealand and the USA

New submarine system between Australia, New Zealand and the USA
Photo: Alcatel

Southern Cross Cables Limited (SCCL) and Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN) have signed a contract for ASN to build and install a new submarine system between Australia, New Zealand and the US called Southern Cross NEXT.

This high-capacity, state-of-the-art system based on an Open Cable architecture and 4 optically amplified fiber pairs using C-band technology, will provide an additional 72 terabits per second of capacity to Southern Cross customers, adding to the existing current capacity of 20 terabits per second.

Southern Cross NEXT will connect Sydney and Auckland to Los Angeles providing the largest capacity and lowest latency connection between Sydney, Australia and Auckland, New Zealand to Los Angeles on the US West Coast. The system includes the latest generation of ASN repeaters, Branching Units (BU) and WSS ROADM, enabling additional branches to Fiji, Tokelau and Kiribati.

Southern Cross’ President and CEO, Mr Laurie Miller said:

“This achievement is a testament to the efforts of the Southern Cross and ASN teams over many months on the project. The addition of the new Southern Cross NEXT route to our existing eco-system will provide existing and future Southern Cross NEXT customers with further resiliency and connectivity options between Australia, New Zealand and the United States. We are delighted to have successfully achieved this key milestone, and all focus will now turn to the timely implementation of the new system, and the continued development of product enhancements to meet our customers growing and changing requirements.”

Mr Philippe Piron, President of Alcatel Submarine Networks, said:

“Alcatel Submarine Networks is very pleased to launch the construction of Southern Cross NEXT, a new chapter after building the original Southern Cross dual cable network twenty years ago. The partnership we developed with Southern Cross all along these years in the Pacific is one of the most successful we ever had with a strategic customer. Over the last three years, having built and deployed five submarine networks landing in Australia, Alcatel Submarine Networks is totally focused on connecting Australia and the South Pacific region with the leading-edge subsea telecommunication technology for long-haul and off-shore platform connectivity.”

The system design comprises multiple Power Feed Equipment (PFE) units with single-end feeding capability, making Southern Cross NEXT an ultra-secured and high-performance system with solid powering resilience.

With the largest capacity, lowest latency, enhanced reliability and network efficiency, Southern Cross NEXT is a best-in-class subsea system in the South Pacific, providing key interconnection infrastructure for major data centers in Sydney, Auckland and Los Angeles.

The Open Cable design ensures the system will be compatible with future generations of line terminal equipment incorporating the latest technologies such as PCS (Probabilistic Constellation Shaping).

Southern Cross can rely on ASN expertise and experience in this part of the world, with numerous subsea projects successfully deployed in the South Pacific, including the first Southern Cross cable system 20 years ago.

Southern Cross NEXT is planned to be completed by December 2021 – January 2022.