The Far North Fiber project, which aims to build the first pan-Arctic submarine cable system connecting Europe and Asia via North America, takes a major step forward with the start of the cable route study.

The Far North Fiber (FNF) project is carried out by the international joint venture Far North Fiber Inc., formed by Cinia Oy (Finland), Far North Digital (USA) and ARTERIA Networks Corporation (Japan). The cable route study of the project will be carried out in cooperation with Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN), as leading technology partner and contractor for this project.

The planned cable system will run from Japan, via the Northwest Passage, to Europe, with a landing in Alaska. European landings are planned in Norway, adjacent to Finland and Ireland. Several branching units are also designed along the route to accommodate future branch connections in the Pacific, Canadian Arctic, and Atlantic.  It is estimated that approx. 15,000 km long submarine cable system will be operational by the end of 2026. The project has been funded by the EU’s Connecting Europe Facility (CEF Digital).

The Cable Route Study (CRS) and the marine survey are critical components of the project. The results will be used to define the best route for the Far North Fiber cable system regarding safety, reliability, cultural and environmental factors, and economics. ASN’s expertise in the Arctic region is a profound asset in realising this project. The cable route study will be completed in 2023. The results of the CRS will support the upcoming marine survey, also scheduled to begin during 2023.

Growing interest towards the project

“We are very pleased to see the constantly growing interest in the FNF project from our key stakeholders, such as customers and investors, as well as states and communities along the route. The cable route study is a concrete and exciting step forward and it is delightful to see how these steps ahead in the project interest the market”, says Ari-Jussi Knaapila, CEO of Cinia.

Paul Gabla, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer of ASN, said: “ASN is delighted to be a key stakeholder in the Far North Fiber Cable System project – Our expertise in the Arctic region will be highly valuable for the success of this ambitious project, which will connect Europe and Asia via North America while promoting economic growth in the region.”

Arctic aspects of the Cable Route Study, such as ice analysis, will receive focused attention, considering the unique trans-Arctic route. Significantly, the Far North Fiber system runs entirely through international waters and the maritime boundaries of Japan, the United States, Canada, and EU nations.

Image source: Courtesy of Far North Fiber

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