The FiberHome EPC Solution Contributed to the Construction of Marine Communication Network


Submarine optical cable network is the main carrier of international information transmission. The construction of submarine optical cable network projects involves communication transmission, wet-end products, marine topography survey and design, engineering, and permit processing. The marine climate and geological conditions are distinguished in different sea areas. The harsh marine environment requires higher quality and reliability on submarine cable products and their construction quality. Submarine cable routing has various coordination issues such as ownership conflicts, ecological protection, fishery compensation, port and waterway regulation, etc., which make the submarine optical network project distinctly unique and complex. The international submarine optical network construction projects are almost monopolized by the EPC solution providers from Japan, France, and the United States. For most Chinese submarine optical network projects, domestic operators often call for bids by sub-items of design, survey and permit processing, marine optical network product supply, and submarine optical cable network construction. There is likely to be a disconnect between the various links. Coordination between subcontractors more complicated, and they are facing problems such as high cost and long project cycle etc.
The FiberHome submarine network EPC solution integrates material and equipment supply, construction and project permit processing. Starting from the beginning of the project, FiberHome submarine network EPC solution conducts overall management of product production, system integration, transportation, construction, and permit processing, thus greatly shortening the lead time and saving project costs. And FiberHome has completed a series of EPC projects such as the Gulangyu-Songyu submarine cable project, the private network submarine cable project so far in China.
Case 1-Gulangyu-Songyu Submarine Cable Project

Pic.1 The construction of Gulangyu-Songyu submarine EPC project

In 2017, in order to alleviate the communication traffic pressure between the national 5A-level tourist attraction, Gulangyu Island, and the mainland, China Mobile (Xiamen) planned to start the Gulangyu-Songyu submarine cable project. The project permit processing and construction are increasingly difficult due to the prosperous Gulangyu island and its roundabout densely covered with various infrastructures such as ports, waterways, wharves, seawalls, and crossover pipelines. At the same time, since the Gulangyu sea area is close to the habitat of the rare animal Chinese white dolphin, in terms of endangered marine animals’ protection, harsh requirements were put forward on the project. If subcontracting the submarine optical cable project permit processing, product supply, construction and other parts in accordance with the usual practice, the project implementation cycle would be expected to be as long as 3 years. In order to shorten the construction time of the project, China Mobile (Xiamen) accepted the EPC solution, and FiberHome undertook the submarine optical cable EPC project.
During the desk research, FiberHome designed a suitable route to bypass the White Dolphin Reserve, and compiled a special evaluation report on the impact of the Chinese White Dolphin. Then it was submitted to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs for approval. In addition, FiberHome convened experts from the national rare species protection field in Beijing to conduct an all-round review, which initiated the further discussion on the protection of rare marine species in marine engineering at China's national level. FiberHome made good project planning in advance, and actively communicated the latest laws and policies with units like China's State Oceanic Administration, Xiamen Marine and Fishery Bureau, Xiamen Maritime Safety Administration, Xiamen Port Administration, Xiamen Rare Marine Species National Nature Reserve, Xiamen Kulangsu-Wanshi Mountain Scenic Area Management Committee, etc. to solve the coordination problems of relevant interested parties. FiberHome applied for licenses and went through various formalities in parallel in multiple ways and in the meanwhile effectively ensured the supply of communication products and construction preparations for the project. In only one and a half years, FiberHome completed a series of demonstrations such as sea area use demonstration, environmental impact assessment, channel impact assessment, navigation safety assessment, etc., and successfully obtained the construction permit. FiberHome even carried out construction at late night to reduce the impacts on passing ships and surrounding tourists. During the construction, the professional noise monitoring system showed that the Chinese White Dolphin and its activity area were not affected by the project. FiberHome successfully completed the EPC at last.

Case 2-Private network submarine optical cable network EPC project
In March 2020, FiberHome undertook the EPC project of private submarine cable network. The project was so rarely seen in China, for its total length of submarine cable exceeded 100 kilometers. FiberHome overcame the problem of epidemic, raced against time, and orderly carried out all parts of the project, such as delivery permit processing, product production and supply, and construction preparation. Affected by the epidemic and the time for permit processing, the construction of the submarine cable did not start until June 2020, the time when the sea area of the project was in the typhoon season, and climatic factors have brought huge uncertainty to the project. Paying great attention to the weather conditions, FiberHome called two professional submarine cable construction vessels, both of which ware over 1,000 tons, and increased the number of construction vessels and personnel to carry out 24-hours uninterrupted construction during the typhoon gaps. The construction progress was ensured under the premise of guaranteeing the safety of the operation. The submarine cable route of the project crosses with many other submarine cable pipelines. FiberHome imported the routing coordinates of the existed submarine cable pipelines into the positioning system and sent divers to go to the crossover point for field data review. During the construction, joint sleeves were installed on the submarine cable, and after the construction, the submarine cable was laid with cement row to get protection. The problem of the submarine cable route’s crossover with multiple other submarine cable pipelines was solved at last and the safety of the existing pipeline and the submarine cable of this project was ensured. FiberHome completed the project in less than one year, which was highly recognized by the owner.
In order to ensure the smooth development of all parts of EPC project, FiberHome signed a strategic cooperation agreement with the South China Sea Survey Technology Center of the State Oceanic Administration in October 2020. The two parties will give full play to their advantages in the field of marine network communication EPC solutions and marine surveys to achieve win-win cooperation. In October 2020, FiberHome and Jiangsu Huaxicun Offshore Engineering Service Co., Ltd jointly invested to establish Fenghua Offshore Engineering Equipment Co., Ltd at the cooperation signing ceremony. They trained a professional submarine cable engineering team and built a submarine cable construction vessel with independent property rights-"Fenghua 21". The 7,000-ton construction vessel was fully and well equipped, and had the ability to lay more than 100 kilometers of submarine optical cables every day, which further enhanced FiberHome’s construction and maintenance capabilities of submarine optical cable project.

Pic.2 The submarine cable construction vessel “Fenghua 21”

Marine communication system products play an important role in the marine communication network. At the beginning of 2021, FiberHome led the key R&D project in the field of marine communications-" the research and application demonstration of ultra-long span and large-capacity marine optical transmission system ". The project will carry out research on the application scenarios of ultra-long span ocean networks, and propose key technologies such as modulation and coding for larger information volume, high-gain amplification and optical transmission link design. The project, based on independently developed core optoelectronic devices and optical transmission equipment suitable for ocean networks, is expected to solve the major scientific problem the current ocean network construction is facing-- "single-span transmission distance and capacity improvement of optical fiber channel" with the help of a series of researches on ultra-long span and large-capacity ocean optical transmission-- the research on the key theory and technology, the development of its system equipment, and the engineering application demonstration. The project will use self-developed core chips and devices to achieve a breakthrough of 10Tb/s plus capacity in the ultra-long single-span optical transmission system, so as to fill the gap in the application of the domestic ultra-long-span large-capacity marine optical transmission system.
The FiberHome marine network communication EPC solution realizes the seamless connection among key links such as material production, construction, and permit processing of the submarine cable project. The relevant core marine network communication products have completely independent intellectual property rights, and all products can be customized to achieve highly autonomous control. In 2020, FiberHome's EPC project won the People's Post and Telecommunications annual "ICT Innovation Award"-"Excellent Bearer Network Solution Award". FiberHome has gradually stepped into the field of international submarine cable engineering EPC, and has completed projects in Malaysia, Kenya, Chile and other countries and regions. FiberHome is about to deliver an EPC project of more than 1,300 kilometers of submarine cable in the Philippines. In the future, FiberHome will continue to implement the strategy of scientific research and innovation in the field of marine communications, optimize marine network communications EPC solutions, and continue to contribute to the construction of marine network communications networks in China and all around the world.

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