The design capacity of the East Africa Submarine System (Eassy), a submarine cable that connects countries along Africa’s east coast, has been bumped up to nearly 5Tbit/s. It’s the second time the capacity has been upped.
According to Eassy investor, the West Indian Ocean Cable Company (Wiocc), says the increase in the system’s capacity, to 4,72Tbit/s, has been made possible by using the latest 40Gbit/s wavelength technology from supplier Alcatel-Lucent. The upgrade means Eassy is able to configure 59 40Gbit/s links on each of the cable’s two fibre pairs.
According to Wiocc, Eassy now represents more than 70% of the international fibre inventory on Africa’s east coast. Its competitors are Seacom and The East African Marine System.
“The Eassy management committee has also announced that Eassy’s operational capacity will be more than doubled at the end of this year, driven by faster-than-expected capacity uptake by shareholders and other domestic and international telecommunications operators and Internet service providers,” Wiocc says.
Eassy is a 10 000km-long system that originally had a design capacity of 1,4Tbit/s. It is the fastest undersea cable system serving the African continent. However, new cables being built on Africa’s west coast, including the upcoming West African Cable System (Wacs), will bring greater design capacity to the continent. Wacs has a design capacity of 5,1Tbit/s.
The Eassy cable follows a similar but shorter route to the Seacom system. It connects SA with Port Sundan and Djibouti in the Red Sea. From there, it connects to myriad international cable systems that provide onward connectivity to Asia and Europe. It was constructed by Alcatel Lucent Submarine Networks at a cost of almost US$300m. — Staff reporter, TechCentral