26 Jan '15, 4pm

How to Thread a Fiber-Optic Cable Through the Arctic

How to Thread a Fiber-Optic Cable Through the Arctic

The ice that has long covered the North American Arctic is melting away, creating an opportunity for companies to capitalize on these virgin waters. Among the shipping and oil mavens with an eye on the Northwest Passage is the company Arctic Fibre, which is trying to thread a 15,600-kilometer fiber-optic cable right through it. A year from now, slow ships loaded with reels of cable will deploy to three oceans and the farthest corners of North America to begin installing the cable, meter by meter. The ocean’s depths are often a murky mystery, however, and crews must rely on sonar and sophisticated maps of the seafloor to carefully unfurl the line and keep it from twisting into loops, snagging on abandoned anchors, or dropping into underwater crevasses.

Full article: http://spectrum.ieee.org/telecom/internet/how-to-thread-a...

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