NEW AGE OF THE CLS: Connecting Continents at a Time When Communication Has Become the Fourth Utility
By Gil Santaliz
November 30, 2020
If we have learned one thing this year, it is that global communications are a necessity. In fact, connectivity has become almost more important than electricity – and solidified itself as the fourth utility. The digital networks that deliver the internet to our homes and communication between continents have risen above an ancillary “nice to have” to a service that is critical to everything from economic stability to education.
NJFX has proven crucial as well, by creating a new model of connectivity where the Cable Landing Station (CLS) is more than just a passive location. The CLS is a secure connectivity hub, necessary for future proofing our global network. Over the last five years, NJFX’s CLS campus has evolved to
become a pivotal location enabling global communications in a more efficient manner.
Just by the numbers, the facility hosts $2 billion worth of assets, 25 networks, including 80% of U.S. carriers, more than 300 ASNs and four subsea cable systems. In a relatively short period of time, the subsea systems landing at NJFX have capacity that increased from approximately 10 terabyte systems to 160-300 terabytes.
That level of capacity is spearheaded by the convergence of four subsea cables establishing NJFX as a connectivity hub enabling direct intercontinental connectivity across continents. The inter-exchange of traffic is available via TGN1, TGN2, Seabras and HAVFRUE/AEC2. Other cable systems are currently being planned. This convergence decreases hops and increases security while improving latency and allows carriers and service providers to reach their destinations more directly.
In particular, the launch of the AEC2/HAVFRUE cable system, the first new subsea system to traverse the North Atlantic in 20 years, brings unprecedented bandwidth via NJFX. The system completes the North Atlantic Loop between North America and Denmark, Ireland and Norway, unlocking the Nordic Gateway. This gateway is one of the few genuinely sustainable solutions in the data center industry today, allowing utilization of 100% emissions-free hydropower from the Nordic countries.