Something in our Waters

By Emmanuel Narokobi

Just an update here on the Pipe Network under sea internet cable, which is running through PNG from Guam to Sydney. I have written previously on this project here and here.

Cable loading on the first ship, “Durable” is now ¾ complete. The second cable ship, “Decisive” will arrive in Hitachi on 5th April for loading and will be sailing on or around the 22nd April to start the lay south from Guam. The Decisive will lay from Guam to Madang in Papua New Guinea.

The process of loading the cable onto the ship is a surprisingly manual process. Every metre is manually laid in the tank to ensure as uniform a lay in the tank as possible. This provides protection from movement in the tank during large seas and allows the maximum amount of cable to be loaded as possible. (Source Pipe Networks Blog)

Now this is just one way our internet speeds should pick up, but while we’re on this topic Coconut Wireless from Fiji has a list of other undersea cable projects in our region. I’ve pasted an excerpt from his post below:

An Up-to-date primer on the state of submarine cable projects in the Pacific Region is titled Trans-Pacific Capacity: Possible New Price War? It includes a section that heavily references the South Pacific:

The latest construction wave began in 2006 and has been centered on the Asian and Pacific Regions. The current round of activity started with the Gondwana, Australia to New Caledonia system,Telstra’s Australia to Hawaii system and six new trans-Pacific cables. These new cables are the Trans Pacific Express, Asia American Gateway, FLAG’s Eagle, Next Generation Network, and the Unity cable projects (Source: TMC).

Out of these six projects, only one faces significant delay:

TPE is in service, AAG is nearing completion, Unity has been surveyed and will be installed in 2009, while only  the FLAG Eagle system has been postponed, says Graham Evans, EGS Survey Group business development director, reported by Submarine Telecoms Forum (Source: TMC).

So again, I have to say that once all this infrstrcuture is laid down it will be up to the Governments, Regulatory Bodies and ISP’s to give us internet access at a fair price.

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2 thoughts on “Something in our Waters

  1. Hey man, thanks for the link. That’s an amazing picture. It’s so difficult for us to imagine that these things actually have to be deployed the length of the ocean-floor.

    I’m glad the TMC post was of use to you. Let’s hope the current trend of spending on infrastructure continues and gives everyone in the region viable options for connectivity.

    That being said, backhaul is just part of the picture. We have to get our incumbent providers and new entrants to deliver cheaper and more quality service, in order to see real change in the Internet situation.

    Cannot stress the role of regulation! CW will continue to stress education of these issues and press to get us to those next-generation networks.

  2. Thanks CW, keep up the good work because, anyone can do the technical side of things what always helps or hinders growth in ICT in any country always comes back to the government and its regulators.

    They are the principle bodies that are able to set the tone for how the industry should develop.

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