Official release: “Clip the Ship” as the Virgin Islands evolves into the Next Generation of Technology


Community invited to document historic passage through our waters

ST. THOMAS – The Virgin Islands Next Generation Network is inviting the public to participate in a monumental moment of technology and its transformational power in the Virgin Islands. On August 3rd, 2015, submarine cable specialists will begin the laying of the much anticipated submarine fiber optic cable that will expand the interconnection of our territory.

Last week, the ship responsible for delivering, and submerging the cable began its route from South America to St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. The ~300 ft. vessel is very similar to a freight ship-accompanied with a crew of 15-30 people, which includes the Captain, Technical specialists, divers and more. Since the fiber optic cables are projected to reach a depth of 12,000-15,000 ft., a variety of sea craft are also on board such as submarine robots, designed to avoid under sea terrain obstacles and coral reefs. Cables are set on the ship ready to be deployed from the stern or bow between the approximate 70-80 kilometers that separate the islands within the territory. To ensure network capacity and redundancy, two cables with the capacity for 10Gbps and higher broadband speeds will be laid on the sea floor and will connect the islands of St. Thomas and St. Croix. Currently, the network leases 2.5 Gbps interisland capacity from AT&T.

To highlight the event, the Clip the Ship initiative has been created to involve Virgin Islanders in this historic moment. To participate, simply capture a picture or video footage of the ship in route, from our beautiful shores and share on our social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter) by hash tagging, #viNextGen.

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