A submarine or undersea communications cable between land-based stations is placed on the seabed to deliver telecommunication signals across seas, oceans, lagoons, or lakes. There are currently roughly 380 undersea cables in use worldwide, with a total length of more than 1.2 million kilometres.
Many undersea cables got funded by internet titans like Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft. As a result, modern society is well connected, but not many people know about undersea cables and how it all started, so we explained it in the other text.
In the 1850s, the first undersea communications cables transported telegraphy traffic, enabling the first instant connection between different continents. The Submarine Telegraph Company successfully laid the first cable across the English channel in 1851. From 1955 to 1956, the first transatlantic telephone cable system got placed between Scotland and Newfoundland. In 1988, TAT-8 increased the transmission to 280 megabytes per second.
Problems With Early Cables
Electrical difficulties plagued first long-distance undersea telegraph cables. Along with those kinds of problems, numerous lines got harmed by sea animals. There have been reports of sharks biting cables and sawfish attacks. Pests could also lay hemp between the steel outer layers of the wires, which made an unwanted entrance to the vulnerable parts. As the years went by, cables got made with better technology and materials.
Optical fibre technology is used in today’s cables to convey digital data, such as private data, Internet, and telephone traffic. Modern lines usually are 1″ in diameter and weigh roughly 1.4 tonnes per kilometre for the marine areas. However, heavier and larger cables get used for shallow-water areas close to shore.
The first fibre-optic cables got made in the 1980s. They’re used because of their outstanding clarity, allowing repeaters to be separated by more than 100 kilometres, reducing the number of amplifiers and the distortions they create. Making the Internet possible is a complex process. As a result, we’re getting endless ways of entertainment and pages to surf.
Many companies modernized their products and made them available online. For example, people used to drive to casinos to play. Although many casinos are still out there, people prefer the web browser to experience it more and more (a great example is an online casino in Canada). So not only it benefits the player, but it also brings more profit to companies.
How Cables Are Laid
To lay an undersea cable takes years and a lot of money. The process starts with checking naval charts. Lines are safer in deep water on a flat surface, away from rocks and other potential hazards. Based on the location, cable contractors may be required to dig concrete trenches into concealing the cable and preventing it from being smashed on the rocks. After everything gets planned and checked, large ships start to transport cables.
The practice of tapping underwater cables isn’t something new. US submarines brought divers with specially developed equipment to Soviet lines and intercepted all communications in the Cold War. And this is only one of many cases. Governments around the world are working on preserving the data and fighting against hackers. All for the sake of all citizens because, after all, we’re all on the Internet.