Submarine cable system IRIS goes live with Ciena

Created May 24, 2023
News and Business

The third submarine cable system between Iceland and the Republic of Ireland has gone live using Ciena’s GeoMesh Extreme submarine network solution powered by WaveLogic 5 Extreme, according to Farice, the main provider of international capacity from Iceland to mainland Europe.

IRIS connects southwest Iceland to Galway, Ireland, with onward connectivity to the UK, Denmark, and the Nordics. The operators says the redundancy offered by IRIS and Farice’s other submarine systems—FARICE-1 and DANICE—significantly increases network service availability.

For IRIS, Farice deployed Ciena’s 6500 Packet-Optical Platform, powered by WaveLogic 5 Extreme coherent optics, and Manage, Control and Plan (MCP) domain controller. Ciena Services provided consulting, systems integration, training, and optimisation—and will perform maintenance services to ensure the network continues to operate at peak performance.

Additionally, Ciena assisted Farice with upgrading terrestrial routes in Iceland for IRIS and DANICE to a protected ring system with a fast restoration using a ROADM-based GeoMesh Extreme architecture; DANICE was also updated to WaveLogic 5 Extreme coherent optics. The IRIS cable system, which went live on March 1, is a six-fibre pair trunk delivering 22Tbps per fibre pair, for a total capacity of 132Tbps, at 500Gbps line rates.

The Farice Submarine Network. Image: Farice

Iceland’s unique geological composition has helped the country become a world leader in clean energy and a pioneer in geothermal technology, attracting multinational corporations, tier 1 and 2 service providers, and data centre operators alike because of low electricity costs and renewable energy sources.

“Our new IRIS submarine cable system provides a critical ‘digital bridge’ between Iceland and Ireland, the heart of trans-Atlantic connectivity and an important data centre hub. Ciena’s GeoMesh Extreme submarine network solution allows us to support the continued growth of Iceland’s international business presence with resilient, high-speed, low cost-per-bit connectivity to mainland Europe,” commented Örn Orrason, vice president of sales and business development at Farice.

Thomas Soerensen, VP, global submarine solutions at Ciena says, “By deploying a third submarine network cable in Iceland, Farice has dramatically increased the redundancy and resiliency of connectivity in the northwest Atlantic. Route diversity and green energy capabilities will help make Iceland highly attractive to data centre operators, cloud providers, and other businesses that require high-performance networking.”

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This article was written
by Peter Dykes

Peter Dykes is a independent telecoms and technology journalist who has over that last 30 years written for a wide range of B2B publications and companies. A former BT engineer, he specialises in networks and associated support systems. He is currently Editor of Optical Connections.