NEC innovation for subsea telecom cables and repeater

NEC and its subsidiary OCC Corporation have completed qualification of subsea repeaters and optical cable containing up to 20 fiber pairs (40 fibers).
NEC submarine cable
NEC claims that the 25 percent increase in fiber count over 16 fiber pair systems previously built by NEC allows cable owners to construct subsea telecom cables capable of the highest traffic capacity, while optimizing the cost per bit of the wet plant.

NEC achieved this milestone with minor modifications to its repeater and cable designs. NEC engineers have optimized key repeater components, proving that its existing cable design could easily accommodate more fibers.

The 20 fiber pair repeaters continue to use quadruple pump sharing technology, first introduced by NEC in 2010, for high optical and electrical efficiency.

OCC’s 20 fiber pair cable can be manufactured using a range of existing optical fibers, according to the needs of each new cable system.

OCC has demonstrated to its customers that they can visually identify individual fibers using a combination of ring marking and conventional fiber coloring. This allows the potential number of fibers in a cable to be greatly expanded. Significantly, in OCC cable, the fiber’s transmission performance is completely unaffected, either by the fiber coloring or cabling processes.

“Further significant increases in the fiber pair count of NEC’s wet plant are coming soon,” Takaaki Ogata, executive technical manager of NEC’s Submarine Network Division, said.
NEC has already started the mass production of the newly-qualified subsea repeaters and optical cable.

The submarine optical fiber cable market was valued at $12.68 billion in 2019, at a CAGR of over 13.51 percent during the forecast period (2020 – 2025), according to Mordor Intelligence report.