Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Google's Firmina cable to link North and South America

Google announced plans to build a 12-fiber pair subsea cable linking North and South America via the Atlantic.

The Firmina cable system, which will be designed, manufactured and installed by SubCom, will run from the East coast of the United States to Las Toninas, Argentina, with additional landings in Praia Grande, Brazil and Punta del Este, Uruguay. 

The Firmina system will use SubCom's 18kV power technology, which will enable Firmina to be the world's longest cable capable of maintaining operations with single-end feed power, in the event there is a far-end fault. 


Manufacture of the cable and equipment will take place at SubCom’s recently expanded manufacturing campus in Newington, NH, USA during 2021 and early 2022, with main lay installation operations scheduled for summer 2022. The system is expected to be ready for service by the end of 2023.

In a blog post announcing the cable, Bikash Koley, VP Global Networking, Google Cloud stated: “As people and businesses have come to depend on digital services for many aspects of their lives, Firmina will improve access to Google services for users in South America. With 12 fiber pairs, the cable will carry traffic quickly and securely between North and South America, giving users fast, low-latency access to Google products such as Search, Gmail and YouTube, as well as Google Cloud services.”

The cable is named after Maria Firmina dos Reis (1825 - 1917), a Brazilian abolitionist, considered Brazil’s first novelist, whose 1859 novel, √örsula, depicted life for Afro-Brazilians under slavery.

Including Firmina, Google now has investments in 16 subsea cables, such as Dunant, Equiano and Grace Hopper, and consortium cables like Echo, JGA, INDIGO, and Havfrue.

https://cloud.google.com/blog/products/infrastructure/announcing-the-firmina-subsea-cable