MADRID, June 5 (Xinhua) -- A new undersea telecommunications cable known as MAREA that aims to improve connections between Europe and the United States is expected to reach the Spanish coast on June 12 according to a report in the El Pais newspaper on Monday.
Deployment of the cable, which is being jointly laid by Spanish telecommunications giant Telefonica, along with Microsoft and Facebook, began from the east coast of the United States on May 24 and will reach the French city of Calais on June 9, before then continuing to the town of Sopelana, close to Bilbao, northern Spain.
Microsoft described MAREA as "the highest-capacity subsea cable to ever cross the Atlantic - featuring eight fiber pairs and an initial estimated design capacity of 160Tbps (TeraBits) Per Second."
That rate is 16 million times faster than a standard home internet connection. And according to Frank Rey, head of Global Network Acquisition at Microsoft Cloud Infrastructure and Operations, it's routing south of other trans-Atlantic cables means it will become "the first to connect the United States to southern Europe: from Virginia Beach, Virginia to Bilbao, Spain and then beyond to network hubs in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia."
"This marks an important new step in building the next generation infrastructure of the internet," commented Ray in a blog.