Crosslake Fibre has announced that it has begun its underwater marine survey for its Lake Ontario submarine fibre-optic cable project. The marine survey is a critical aspect of development for the new 60 km cable being developed by Crosslake Fibre across Lake Ontario.

Crosslake Fibre’s Lake Ontario project is an unrepeatered submarine fibre-optic cable system that will be the first system across Lake Ontario to directly connect Toronto, Canada and Buffalo, New York with dark fibre. The submarine cable is part of a 131 km high fibre count network to provide diverse, low latency connectivity to enterprises, content providers, and carrier customers between data centres in Toronto and the United States. The ready-for-service (RFS) date for the system is September 2018.

“We are very excited to begin the marine survey as it is a very important and material milestone in the development of the system,” states Mike Cunningham, chief executive officer, Crosslake Fibre. “The marine survey is an essential step in the process of engineering the route, cable burial program, and cable design.”

Crosslake has engaged Canadian Seabed Research Ltd. of Porters Lake, Nova Scotia to undertake the marine survey. “Canadian Seabed Research is honored to have been selected by Crosslake Fibre to conduct the submarine Geophysical and Geotechnical route surveys for this historic, fibre-optic cable installation across Lake Ontario waters,” states Glen Gilbert, of Canadian Seabed Research. The entire survey, including all geophysical and geotechnical data acquisition, will take about three weeks.

“Many marine surveys have been undertaken over the years in Lake Ontario for the development of infrastructure such as water outfall pipes, intake pipes, electrical cables and civil works,” comments Cunningham. “We need to conduct our own marine survey to account for this infrastructure and to enable us to design a low impact cable landing.” 

Crosslake Fibre intends to use horizontal directional drilling to land the submarine cable at each landing in order to minimize any impact to the shore end or beach. “The Horizontal Directional Drilling allows us to construct the cable so there is no impact to the beach,” Cunningham adds. “The only visible infrastructure that will remain is a utility manhole.”