News

We received telco industry innovation award for Coral Sea Cable System Project

Posted on September 11, 2020

Cs2 Sydney

We are thrilled – Vocus was awarded the Innovation Award (Large Company) in the ACOMM Awards in Sydney last night, for the Coral Sea Cable System Project.

The ACOMMs, run by the Communications Alliance, are the Australian telecommunications industry's premier awards for excellence.

The award is recognition of the leading experience and expertise Vocus has in specialist fibre and innovative network services and the delivery of large-scale submarine cable projects.

With everything that has happened this year, it feels a long time since we competed the final testing on the Coral Sea Cable System, and it was accepted by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

The Coral Sea Cable System (CS2) is a highly advanced submarine fibre optic cable system stretching ~5,400km between Australia, Papua New Guinea (PNG), and Solomon Islands (SI).

Delivered for the Australian Government on 29 November 2019 on budget and one month earlier than planned, the Coral Sea Cable System provides faster, more affordable and reliable communications infrastructure to the people, businesses, and governments of PNG and Solomon Islands. 

It involved almost two years of planning, design, construction, and project management across Australia, PNG, and SI, their respective governments, and the project’s consortium partners, and was a key milestone of the Government’s Pacific Step-up Plan, designed to drive new investments in the Pacific.

CS2 is the first-ever fibre cable to SI, increasing capacity by 6,000 times, and offers an increase of about 800 times capacity at PNG’s international gateway. 

The system has a 4 fibre-optic pair core, sheathed in one physical cable. From Sydney, it traverses ~2,500 kms, where it splits into two cables in the Coral Sea, each containing a 2-fibre pair core, that are connected to landing stations in Port Moresby in PNG, and Honiara in SI.

Where the cables branch off, they are connected through a main branching unit, which was laid at a depth of 4,650m on the Coral Sea floor. The system has a total capacity of 40 Terabits per second (Tbps). The four fibre pairs each have a capacity of 10 Tbps. This delivers 20 Tbps to each country.

The system has 42 latest-generation Spatial Division Multiplexing (SDM) repeaters installed over its length, employing duplicated pump lasers. The SDM repeaters are cutting-edge technology in subsea systems and their installation was a first for consortium partner Alcatel Submarine Networks.

“The Coral Sea Cable System is one of those rare multi-nation building initiatives that will make a tangible long-term contribution to PNG, Solomon Islands and Australia,” said Vocus Group CEO Kevin Russell.

Through a commitment to excellence, strong project management and relationships with our partners, we’re proud to have delivered such an important project for the Governments of Australia, PNG and Solomon Islands, and grateful to the Communications Alliance and the ACOMM Awards judges for recognising this innovative initiative. 

Photo credit: DFAT/ Peter Morris – Sydney Heads