Huawei Boosts WACS Subsea Link

Huawei Marine has completed upgrades on the section from South Africa to Portugal and Portugal to United Kingdom of the West Africa Cable System (WACS) using Huawei Marine’s 100G transmission solution.

With the length of the Digital Line Segment (DLS) between South Africa and Portugal beyond 11,450 km, it’s one of the longest 100G submarine links in the industry.

Commissioned in 2012, WACS is the largest submarine cable directly linking Southern Africa to Europe and is the culmination of investment by eighteen international operators and regional carriers. At 14,530 km in total length, WACS initially offered a design capacity of 5.12 Terabits per second (Tb/s) split among fourteen countries including: South Africa, Namibia, Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo, Cameroon, Nigeria, Togo, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Cape Verde, Spain (Canary Islands), Portugal and the United Kingdom.

The upgrade solutions over 11,450 km utilize Huawei Marine’s Soft Decision-Forward Error Correction (SD-FEC) and bit interleaved technologies which, according to the company, guarantee the compatibility of 100 Gb/s channels with 10 Gb/s channels on the existing network.

“Our aim is to provide an advanced, stable and seamless communications network which contributes to the social and economic development of the African region,” said Vishen Maharaj, Chairperson of the WACS consortium’s Management Committee. “We are constantly working to improve the capabilities of the WACS network while maintaining an economically viable and flexible service for customers. It is our pleasure to cooperate with Huawei Marine to significantly expand the WACS network, which is a key part of this effort.”

Mike Constable, Chief Executive Officer, Huawei Marine Networks, said: “With our advanced technology, Huawei Marine has achieved 100G ultra-long haul transmission and offered the WACS consortium a cost-effective solution that substantially increases and enhances network connectivity, operational efficiency and the end-user experience in these growth regions.”

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