New 3.2 Tbps cable connects U.S. to China

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New 3.2 Tbps cable connects U.S. to China

A new submarine cable with an operating capacity of 3.2 Tbps was opened today, connecting the United States to mainland China, South Korea and Taiwan.

The Trans-Pacific Express (TPE) cable network is now the highest capacity cable system between the United States and mainland China.

The system has an operating capacity of 3.2 Terabits per second (Tbps) stretched across 18,000km of cable. With a minimum of 80 wavelengths per fibre, TPE has the highest wave-density of any submarine cable in the world of this length.

Work began in September 2007 when the first TPE cable was placed in the water off the South Korean coast.

The final splice was completed in April 2008, allowing the first light to be transmitted between Chongming, China and Nedonna Beach, Oregon.

After extensive testing, the consortium today declared the system ready for service.

The submarine cable project was built by a consortium of telecommunication companies – China NetCom, China Telecom, China Unicom, Chunghwa, Korea Telecom – and Verizon business, the only U.S.-based founding member.

Verizon Business helped to design, engineer, build and prepare the TPE cable network.

“We have a dedicated group of Verizon Business engineers and submarine cable experts who teamed with other consortium members to design, engineer and build this entire cable system with our cable supplier in record time,” said Ihab Tarazi, Verizon Business vice president of global network planning.

“We are involved in more than 65 submarine cable systems around the world, but this TPE cable network is one of the most aggressive submarine cable builds we’ve worked on in the last 15 years.”

Verizon Business also plays a role in managing the U.S. TPE network operations centre.

The next planned phase of the TPE system, with the addition of NTT Communications to the consortium, will provide new connections from Japan to China, Taiwan and South Korea, the companies said in a statement.

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