Antarctic division asks for fibre optic cable

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Antarctic division asks for fibre optic cable

Connect sampling devices towed by icebreaker.

Australia’s Antarctic division is hoping to buy a fibre optic cable to link its ice breaker ship and towed environmental sampling devices.

The AAD is a division of the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (SEWPaC) and looks after Australia’s interests in the Antarctic.

It has 300 staff across its support centre and university presence in Tasmania, and four stations in the Antarctic. 

It also has an icebreaker vessel, the RSV Aurora Australis, which is the platform for a large annual marine research effort. The ship also resupplies the research stations. 

The AAD this week tendered for a fibre optic cable system to provide high bandwidth communication from the ship to sampling devices such as nets and other environment samplers.

The AAD will use the cable with a fibre optic winch, as part of a separate tender. 

The tender includes the cable, a rotary joint/ slip ring, and media conversion systems.

The cable needs to support no less than 35kN (kilonewton) when fully extended in the icy Antarctic water, needs to be longer than 5000m in length, and have a breaking strength of no less than 195kN. 

The cable must have at least one single-mode optical fibre channel, and include a two year warranty, according to tender documents. Applications close April 9. 

The AAD declined to comment to iTnews on the project.

The division is also currently on the hunt for a supplier to upgrade its storage and backup system, to meet expected growth in its production data capacity requirements over the next five years.

The division wants to replace HP StorageWorks EVA8000, HP P2000 SAN arrays, fibre channel switches and associated infrastructure by August. 

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