Nortel to build U.S. terrestrial optical network for Southern Cross Cables

Aug. 8, 2001--Southern Cross Cables has selected Nortel Networks to supply ultra long haul DWDM optical transmission equipment for the terrestrial portion of a 30,500-kilometer submarine cable network.

Southern Cross Cables has selected Nortel Networks (NYSE:NT) (TSE:NT.) to supply ultra long haul DWDM (dense wave division multiplex) optical transmission equipment for the terrestrial portion of a 30,500-kilometer submarine cable network linking the U.S. mainland to Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand and Fiji beginning in the third quarter of this year.

Southern Cross will deploy Nortel Networks OPTera Long Haul 4000 Optical Line System to provide reliable, high-speed, high-capacity data connectivity between cable landing sites on the U.S. mainland. Nortel claims that its OPTera Long Haul 4000 is the industry's first open 10 gigabits-per-second (Gbps) optical backbone to break the 4,000-kilometer distance barrier without opto-electronic regeneration.

Nortel Networks OPTera Long Haul 4000 Optical Line System is designed to help carriers be more responsive to the accelerating appetite for bandwidth in global markets. With its rapid wavelength provisioning, OPTera Long Haul 4000 provides carriers with the ability to timely deploy new services, which is an advantage in today's highly competitive business environment.

The OPTera Long Haul 4000 optical gateway provides an open interface to the Internet, connecting directly to data traffic via 2.5 or 10 Gbps interfaces. DWDM transmitters and broadband receivers feature built-in error rate monitoring as well as optical restoration. In addition, OPTera Long Haul 4000 provides the ultimate flexibility in wavelength manipulation, with 100 percent add/drop capability and wavelength management.

Nortel Networks has also won optical networking contracts for customers in Asia, including Telstra and Cable & Wireless Optus in Australia, and some 29 contracts in China for 10G and DWDM optical solutions spanning more than 40,000 kilometers.

The Southern Cross network entered service in November 2000 and consists of two separate submarine cables linking Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Hawaii and the west coast of the United States. Signals can be transmitted simultaneously around both sides of the network to deliver fully protected capacity. When fully equipped, Southern Cross will potentially deliver 480 Gbps between Australasia and the United States � 480 times the existing trans-Pacific capacity via the PacRim system. The network offers one-way transmission delay of 70 milliseconds between Australasia and the United States, and is designed to deliver 99.999I percent network availability. Southern Cross' investment in a second link between California and Oregon is in line with the company's strategy to ensure the resilience of its overall network is improved.

About Southern Cross:

Southern Cross Cables Limited is an independent company responsible for the design, construction, marketing and management of the Southern Cross Cable Network. Based in Bermuda, the company is owned by Telecom New Zealand, Cable & Wireless Optus and WorldCom. For more information, visit www.southerncrosscables.com.

About Nortel Networks:

Nortel Networks is a provider of networking and communications solutions and infrastructure for service providers and corporations. For more information, visit www.nortelnetworks.com.

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