Svalbard hangs on the Italian – the communication one. Underwater cable connecting the islands with the world is damaged

Space Norway, the operator of Svalbard’s fiber optic connection with the mainland, learned about the problem last Friday, January 7. One of the two cables failed between 130 and 230 kilometers from Longyearbyen on the island of Spitsbergen, the archipelago’s main city and administrative capital.

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Norway. Unexplained damage to the cable connecting Svalbard to the mainland

This is where the cable bed descends steeply from about 300 meters to about 2,700 meters in the Greenland Sea. The location of the damage makes it somewhat difficult to repair, and specialized ships dealing with the laying of such installations must be sent to the site.

The Norwegian Minister of Justice and Public Security, Emilie Enger Mehl, said in a statement that her ministry was closely monitoring the situation and reassured that two-way communication between Svalbard and the rest of the world was normal. The same is reported by Space Norway, but points out that due to the failure, there is no more power reserve in the event of further problems.

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Communication artery at the bottom of the sea

The fiber-optic system connecting Svalbard to the mainland, namely Longyearbyen from Harstad in northern Norway, is nearly 1,400 kilometers long, was installed in 2004. Its task is not only to facilitate communication for the inhabitants of the archipelago and its administrative authorities via broadband Internet, but also to provide data transmission for business. Before that, everyone was doomed to satellite links.

Svalbard and mainland Norway are connected by two underwater optical fibers.Svalbard and mainland Norway are connected by two underwater optical fibers. Source: submarinecablemap.com

The cables are used, among others, by SvalSat – is a private park of over 100 satellite dishes, located on the plateau adjacent to Longyearbyen. According to the local portal “The Barents Observer”, it is the world’s largest commercial station of this type. Located high in the north and close to the Pole, it supports satellite operators in the Polar Region. There are also data centers in Spitsbergen, and they are also collected by numerous scientific units present there.

Space Norway does not yet know how the failure happened, the cause is being investigated.

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About Banner Leon

Videogames entered his life in the late '80s, at the time of the first meeting with Super Mario Bros, and even today they make it a permanent part, after almost 30 years. Pros and defects: he manages to finish Super Mario Bros in less than 5 minutes but he has never finished Final Fight with a credit ... he's still trying.

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