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First direct subsea cable between Africa and South America begins in Angola

South Atlantic Cable System (SACS) the first direct subsea cable link between Africa and South America took a step closer to completion in Angola. The installation of the South Atlantic Cable System (SACS) – a cable with 40 Tbps of capacity that will extend more than 6,500 km to Fortaleza, Brazil – began on the Angolan coast in the municipality of Quissama.

AppsAfrica Call For African Tech Award EntriesThe SACS system is owned by Angola Cables and is being constructed by NEC Corporation.The installation of SACS is considered a strategic project for Angola to advance the region’s digital economy and to improve global communications.

When the entire network is completed, along with associated elements such as data centres and Internet Exchange Points, SACS will offer a paradigm shift in Africa’s telecommunications sector. According to António Nunes, CEO of Angola Cables: “For Angolans, the time to access content available in America – the largest centre for the production and aggregation of digital content and services – will improve fivefold.” Currently it takes approximately 300 milliseconds to connect between Angola and Brazil. With SACS, the latency – the time lag between a data packet being sent and received – is expected to be reduced to approximately 60 milliseconds.

“Angola is becoming one of the telecommunications hubs in sub-Saharan Africa,” added Nunes. “Current cable systems, such as WACS, together with the SACS and Monet cables systems – complemented by local data centers – will improve connectivity, but also economically benefit Angola and the surrounding regions as tech companies requiring high connectivity establish and grow their operations in Africa.”

The installation phase of the cable on the Angolan shore is one of the most important aspects of the project as several levels of interaction and activity are required with several entities simultaneously, and therefore constitute a critical and high risk moment. The protection of both the cable and the teams involved is one of the aspects analyzed and therefore the work is rigorous and well planned. “The installation of SACS represents the realization of a dream, a development that reflects our ability to find solutions and overcome challenges, always having in mind the final objective,” said António Nunes.

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