Google joins £152m fibre project

Google joins £152m fibre project

A 10,000km undersea cable will support net traffic between the US and Asia

Google and five telecoms operators are to work together to built a $300m (£152.2m) undersea network linking the US to Japan.

The Unity project will deploy fibre optic cable over a 10,000km (6,200 mile) distance, with a potential data rate of 7.68 Tbits/second. The speed is equivalent to seven million internet users simultaneously accessing a 1mb file in real-time.

The cross-Pacific connection is ito support growing levels of internet traffic between Asia and the US and should be up and running by the first quarter of 2010.

"The Unity cable system allows the members of the consortium to provide the increased capacity needed as more applications and services migrate online, giving users faster and more reliable connectivity,” said a spokeswoman.

Submarine cables are playing an increasing role in relaying large volumes of data between continents, but they are not without risk.

Earlier this month internet connections across India and the Middle East were disrupted when subsea connections were cut. And the exact cause of the damage is still unknown.

Participating companies including Global Transit, Pacnet, KDDI Corp, Bharti Airtel and Singapore telecommunications.