Orange, together with the other members of the ACE consortium, have begun work on the second phase of the Africa Coast to Europe (ACE) submarine cable system
Today, nearly 12,000 km of fibre optic cable is already used to connect 18 countries - France, Portugal, the Canary Islands (Spain), Mauritania, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Côte d’Ivoire, Benin, Ghana, Nigeria, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and São Tomé & Príncipe. Two landlocked countries, Mali and Niger, are connected via a terrestrial extension. When the second phase is completed, ACE will cover a total distance of 17,000 km and will allow up to 25 countries to access high speed Internet.
The ACE system is being upgraded to the 100G technology, which will increase its design capacity from 5.12 Tbps to 12.8 Tbps. The system is supported by wavelength division multiplexing technology that would accommodate tomorrow's ultra-broadband networks.
To date, the consortium has invested around US$700mn in the construction of the cable, which includes US$250mn from the Orange Group and its subsidiaries.
Along with Orange and its various subsidiaries, the ACE consortium has 20 members are present, that are made up of other Internet and mobile operators and governments of various African countries that are connected by the cable.