Submarine connections

The EllaLink submarine cable system connects LatAm with Europe.

On 4 March 2021, EllaLink reported the completion of its next-generation submarine cable system on a unique route between Latin America and Europe.

The direct route taken by the cable system between the two regions provides a low latency path giving a solid foundation upon which carriers, operators and internet content providers can develop competitive offerings.

The Chief Marketing and Sales Officer at EllaLink commented, “This is a very conservative market, and owners typically build cables along existing routes, like we see in the North Atlantic, but in EllaLink we have created a direct link between Latin America and Europe. If you look at a map, you get the impression that Latin America is much closer to the US than to Europe and it isn’t. In fact, geographically, from Fortaleza in Brazil it is 30 km closer to Portugal than it is to Miami.”

EllaLink is only the second submarine telecommunications cable to link Europe and Latin America. With a gross capacity of 100 terabits/second it offers a significantly greater capacity than its predecessor the Atlantis-2 cable built in 2000 and now outdated for the latest telecommunications solutions.

EllaLink’s CM&SO explained, “Our role is to directly connect data centres in Europe and Latin America in one single hop, creating an express optical platform between the continents. Our clients are carriers, operators, internet service providers and content providers looking for advanced low latency solutions. The EllaLink system also offers the ideal routing to connect China with Brazil.”

“Our role is to directly connect data centres in Europe and Latin America in one single hop, creating an express optical platform between the continents.”

Chief Marketing and Sales Officer, EllaLink

Latin American and European researchers also benefit from the completion of the cable system, through the EU-funded BELLA (Building the European Link with Latin America) programme that has secured dedicated spectrum on EllaLink to support research and educational collaborations, that up to the present day have relied on data communications paths through the US. BELLA capacity on EllaLink is expected to be used for large-scale collaboration projects involving researchers on both continents, including Copernicus, the European programme for earth observation, high energy physics experiments and astronomy.

The head of international relations at GÉANT, the pan-European data network for research and education commented, “For nearly two decades, internet traffic between Europe and Latin America has had to transit the US, the consequence for research and education is higher connectivity costs and longer times for data to be transmitted. The arrival of EllaLink, on a direct path is therefore a game-changer for us.”

The editor of a Brazilian tech magazine celebrated the completion of the project, “The EllaLink cable project would not have been possible without the private sector. I am convinced that EllaLink will be a huge success in boosting scientific collaboration between Latin America and Europe.”

“The EllaLink cable project would not have been possible without the private sector.”

Editor, technology magazine, Brazil

Research in Latin America is very important for Europe because there are many astronomy observatories, particularly in Chile, but also in Argentina. There is also the Copernicus programme providing observation data and the idea is to make that available around the globe to help all sort of earth observation themes, be it crop growth, understanding emergencies and how to respond to those emergencies, deforestation, etc.

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