Vocus Updating Networks Ahead Of ASC

By Corinne Reichert, ZDNet

January 22, 2018

Vocus has announced that it will be upgrading its core domestic networks infrastructure to deliver an additional 8Tbps of capacity between Sydney, Perth, and Melbourne ahead of its Australia Singapore Cable (ASC) becoming ready for service.

“We’re expecting immediate network activity when the ASC is ready for service, so this upgrade is critical to ensuring we keep ahead of demand and continue to provide the most advanced and intelligent network for our customers,” Vocus head of International Luke Mackinnon said.

“The ASC project includes two new PoPs in Singapore, replacing the existing PoP. It will also add diversity and multiple hand-off options in Equinix SG1/SG3 and STT/Globalswitch.

“An entirely new PoP for Christmas Island is a first for Vocus, and will deliver the island’s first ever terrestrial connection providing massive capacity uplift for the community.”

Vocus added that it is currently in the process of signing customers for its ASC, and has multiple agreements “already in place with key customers” ahead of beginning to lay the ASC cable next month.

The ASC, worth $170 million, has been delivered to Singapore; one third of the cable and repeaters will begin being laid in February by the Ile de Re cable laying ship, while the remaining two thirds will be transferred to the Ile de Batz ship in Christmas Island.

The former ship will lay cable between Singapore and Christmas Island, while the latter will travel from Christmas Island to Perth. Both legs will use different cable-laying techniques, as the first leg of the cable must be buried because it will be laid in the shallow and busy Java Sea route, Vocus said.

“We will perform the final splice in April, enabling the commissioning to begin. That will take place in May and June, giving us a ready-for-service date soon after,” Mackinnon said in November.

Vocus had in August confirmed the ASC would be completed ahead of schedule, with services to be launched in July 2018 despite adding a spur to Christmas Island, ahead of competitor cable systems Indigo and Trident.

Vocus signed Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks in December to help build the 4,600-kilometre ASC, which is designed to carry 40Tbps at a minimum across four fibre pairs.

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