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Southern Cross picks Ciena for 40G subsea upgrade

14 November 2011
 
Ciena has secured a major contract to upgrade capacity on the Southern Cross submarine cable in the South Pacific.  The cable links California in the US with Australia and New Zealand stopping off at Hawaii and Fiji along the way. 
 
The network is an impressive 30,500 km long, including 28,900 km of subsea cable incorporating around 500 optical repeaters at 40—70 km intervals, and 1,600km of terrestrial cable.  Ciena says it will install its 40G/100G coherent technology on all seven segments of the network, boosting the lit capacity on each cable to 1 Tbps.
 
"This upgrade takes our network total capacity to 2 Tbps, but with Ciena’s current technology our total capacity can quickly expand to at least 7.2 Tbps," said Ross Pfeffer, director sales and marketing, Southern Cross.
 
This represents the first transpacific cable to be enabled with coherent technology and the longest span – 8,002 km between Auckland, New Zealand and Hawaii – to run 40 Gbps coherent optics, according to Ciena.
 
The deal includes multiple product lines.  To boost capacity, Southern Cross will install Ciena’s 6500 platforms equipped with 40G and 100G submarine-grade coherent line interfaces.  The company will also be deploying Ciena’s 5430 and 5410 reconfigurable switching systems, which offer OTN-based switching to simplify and automate network provisioning and management.  Ciena’s OneControl Unified Management System will tie the systems together by providing end-to-end management across Layers 0 and 1 on both the 6500 and 5400 platforms. Finally Southern Cross will use Ciena’s implementation services to install, commission and turn up the network.
 
By Pauline Rigby