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Here’s what to takes to lay Google’s 9,000km undersea cable

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It takes a plow the size of a small house, a robot the size of a truck and a purpose-built ship to install Google’s latest oceanic infrastructure project—a super-fast submarine Internet cable linking the U.S. and Japan.

The US$300 million FASTER cable system, backed by Google and East Asian telecom firms, will have a peak capacity of 60 Tbps (terabits per second) when it’s ready next year.

About 6,000 kilometers of the cable has been loaded onto the cable ship René Descartes, which is docked at a submarine cable factory in Kitakyushu, southern Japan, operated by NEC group firm OCC. It will be the first time for the vessel, owned by French telecom firm Orange, and her crew to lay some 9,000 km of cable in one go.

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