Australia Japan Cable nearing completion after reaching Australian shores

Oct. 18, 2001--Australia's largest capacity submarine fiber optic cable project, Australia Japan Cable is nearing completion with the connection to Sydney's shores having now commenced.

Australia's largest capacity submarine fiber optic cable project, Australia Japan Cable is nearing completion with the connection to Sydney's shores having now commenced. The $500 million project, which spans more than 12,000 kilometers between Australia and its major trading partner, Japan, via Guam, now has only approximately 3,500 kilometers of cable still to be laid.

Crews have connected the Oxford Falls landing station, one of two in Australia, with a branching section of the cable. The second landing station, in Paddington, will be connected later this month.

When completed, Australia Japan Cable will have a design capacity of 640 Gigabits per second, the equivalent of almost 8 million simultaneous phone calls.

The two Australian landing stations will be connected to the northbound cable via a three-segment fiber optic cable loop.

The first segment terrestrially connects Paddington to Oxford Falls, both of which are in the Sydney metropolitan area. The second segment will connect Paddington to a deep water branching point in the Pacific Ocean, off the East coast of Australia, while the third segment links Oxford Falls to the same deep water branching point.

At that branching point the two separate underwater sheaths of fiber optic cable will converge into the highly efficient, collapsed ring, deep-water configuration for which Australia Japan Cable is renowned. This provides physical route diversity where it is needed and adds to the overall resilience of the network. The two fiber pairs are then enclosed in the same high pressure bearing casing and submerged on an historically proven safe route north to Guam, an important interconnection hub to other cable systems servicing the intra-Asian and North American routes.

Crews have been successfully testing the already completed Japan-Guam section of the cable. Testing for the Australia-Guam section will begin upon completion of installation.

The project is on schedule to meet its projected ready-for-service time frame of late December 2001.

About the Australia Japan Cable Project:

Major shareholders in the AJC project include WorldCom, Japan Telecom, Telstra, NTT, Teleglobe and the AT&T/BT Concert alliance. Australia Japan Cable is a high-bandwidth system linking Australia and its major trading partner, Japan, deploying Dense Wavelength Division Multiplex (DWDM) technology. For more information, visit www.ajcable.com.

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