Global Marine installs the most northerly fibre optic cable system in the world

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Global Marine System Limited has recently completed the installation of the most northerly subsea cable system that will service the research community of Ny-Ålesund in Svalbard, Norway. The research station supports earth and life scientists and is part of an international research community that includes stations owned in Norway, Germany, Japan, Italy, France and the UK.  The station in Ny-Ålesund is the world’s most northern research community.

Global Marine installed the subsea cable in some of the most challenging weather conditions, including freezing winds, driving snow and ice bergs not to mention drops in temperatures to -10c during the project. Cable Innovator successfully completed the installation despite the difficult environmental conditions using its Hi Plough burial capability, and installing shore ends at both Ny-Ålesund and Longyearbyen.    

Global Marine has unparalleled expertise in installing and maintaining subsea cable systems globally, and with a heritage that dates back to the 1850’s has the breadth of knowledge required to plan and install a system in such hazardous conditions.  Global Marine expertise includes: cable routing, system engineering, cable protection requirements as well as on-going maintenance solutions. 

Andy Lloyd, Global Marine’s Director of Installation said: “Global Marine’s previous track record installing subsea cable systems in the Arctic Circle put us in good stead to complete this important project. Most recently, we installed cables from the Svalbard archipelago to the Norwegian mainland and as such we were well aware of, and able to plan for, the difficult conditions encountered. As a company we have extensive experience installing cable in some of the world’s harshest climates, in the deepest oceans as well as in high traffic areas with multiple cables in close proximity. This was yet another challenge for our capable marine team both offshore and on.  I am very pleased that our extensive marine experience has enabled us to successfully complete this important project for our customer, Uninett.”

Helge Stranden, Uninett’s Project Manager added: "It has been a pleasure to work with Global Marine during this project. The installation period on board Cable Innovator clearly demonstrated to us that we were working with a very professional, flexible crew on all levels. I would also like to mention the beach team who assisted in getting the cables through the HDD ducts safely. The final work in this project will be to install DWDM equipment within 3-4 months. When that is completed, the research community in Ny-Ålesund will be connected to the global research network through our new fibre optic subsea cables."


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