Submarine Cable to Boost Southern Ireland’s Data Center Industry

Hibernia cable will like Cork to U.K. and North America

Yevgeniy Sverdlik

December 19, 2014

2 Min Read
Submarine Cable to Boost Southern Ireland’s Data Center Industry
Cross section diagram of an undersea cable. 1. Polyethylene 2. “Mylar” tape 3. Stranded metal (steel) wires 4 . Aluminum water barrier 5. Polycarbonate 6. Copper or aluminum tube 7. Petroleum jelly 8. Optical fibers (source: Wikimedia Commons)

Hibernia Networks announced addition of a southern Ireland landing station to the list of landings for the trans-Atlantic submarine cable system it is building together with TE SubCom.

The landing will be a substantial boost to direct connectivity to North America for Ireland, making the country more attractive for data center development. The project may have an especially big impact on data center development in southern Ireland, as opposed to Dublin, the country’s current data center hub.

The biggest concentration of data centers in Ireland is in and around Dublin. Microsoft has a data center there, and so do Google and Amazon. Digital Realty Trust launched a brand new facility in Dublin in September.

All submarine cables that land in the Dublin area, except one, go to the U.K., according to the map of worldwide submarine cables by TeleGeography. One links Dublin directly to Nova Scotia in Canada.

There are currently six cables connecting southern Ireland directly to the U.K. and one to Canada. The only other direct submarine link between Ireland and North America connects a landing station in a village in the north of Ireland called Killala to New York.

Hibernia’s Express cable system that’s currently under construction will land in multiple locations in the U.K., New York, Nova Scotia, and now also in Cork, Ireland, the country’s third-largest city, located in the South-West region. Hibernia and TE announced start of construction in July.

Cork is a major city but does not have a high concentration of data centers. One well-known data center site there is the Cork Internet Exchange. IT giant EMC is seeking planning permission to build a data center in Cork, the Irish Times reported today.

“The extension of Express to Cork has significant international business implications and will make Ireland that much more attractive to both established players and tech startups alike,” Ireland’s Minister for Agriculture, Food, the Marine and Defense, Simon Coveney said in a statement.

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