Antarctica gets its first-ever undersea internet cable

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Two infrastructure companies are preparing to build the first undersea internet cable in Antarctica.

Two infrastructure companies will build the first broadband connection in Antarctica

The first undersea Internet cable will moor on the Antarctic coast, and two infrastructure companies from Chile and Singapore are preparing to create it.

The Humboldt Line cable, created through a collaboration between Desarrollo Pas and H2 Cable, a BW Digital company, would stretch 15,000 kilometers from Chile to Australia, including branches in New Zealand and two offshore islands. coasts of Chile.

Notably, there will also be a 2,000 km branch connecting Antarctica, which is now the only continent without access to the faster speeds and improved capacity that submarine cables provide.

The register cites a 2021 study paper that says Scott Base and McMurdo Station in Antarctica now have networking capabilities that are “insufficient even to be considered broadband.”

According to report author Peter Neff, “a summer population of up to 1,000 people shares what is similar to the bond experienced by a normal family of three in the United States.”

The arrival of the Humboldt Cable to the beaches of Antarctica will eliminate the region’s reliance on slow and inconsistent satellite internet and enable a first wired connection. The new connection should allow local academics to send large datasets to colleagues around the world.

According to H2 and Desarrollo Pas, the Humboldt Cable will be the most crucial undersea infrastructure connecting South America, enabling the installation of data centers, AI and other data-driven technologies that will place the Chile on the digital map.

The route and timeline are, as of now, official. However, both companies are still looking for new investors before starting procurement and talking to interested parties at anchor sites.

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The Antarctic Infrastructure Renewal Program (AIRP) will improve science operations and initiatives

The Australian government said in 2019 that it would enhance our network of Antarctic research stations and related infrastructure with an investment of over $450 million over the next ten years.

Their infrastructure will be updated, operations will be improved and research programs will be revitalized. The Mawson, Casey and Davis research stations last had a major renovation program in the 1980s.

By supporting the implementation of Australia’s Antarctic Strategy and 20-Year Action Plan, this investment in Australia’s Antarctic Program will strengthen Australia’s scientific research, presence and leadership in Antarctica.

Modernizing new and existing infrastructure, improving operations and revitalizing ongoing research activities are all goals of the Antarctic Infrastructure Renewal Program (AIRP).

In accordance with National Alliance procurement guidelines, the AIRP will be delivered using a program alliance delivery model and will involve a two-step procurement process to select the preferred DAA partner(s). and establish an alliance.

In the procurement process, an Expression of Interest (EOI) phase will identify two Proponents participating in a lengthy interactive Request for Proposals (RFP) phase for construction costs and bids for the two initial work packages. AusTender provides EOI data. The Antarctic Infrastructure Renewal Program aims to improve new and existing infrastructure, operations and research (AIRP).

While this procurement is focused on finding non-proprietary participants for a program alliance, the DAA will open opportunities for local industry participation. Australian industry players wishing to supply goods and services to the Alliance must register online.

Related article: Increase in Antarctic sea ice despite global warming; Sign that there is still hope for the Earth?

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