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Alcatel Completes Submarine Projects

Upgrades a 24km section of the Sea-Me-We 3 network; links the Azores and Madeira Islands to the Portuguese mainland for PT Comunicações

September 30, 2003

3 Min Read

PARIS -- Alcatel (Paris: CGEP.PA and NYSE: ALA), today announced the successful upgrade of a section of the Sea-Me-We 3 cable. The project covered the installation and deep burial of a new 24 km cable in the southern North Sea. The achievement of cable burial to 2.5 meters below the seabed represents the deepest plough burial performed in the North Sea.

An Alcatel operated cable ship, the "Ile de Sein", carried out marine operations in an area where deep cable burial is considered the optimal method to ensure long-term system integrity. Deep burial is necessary to provide protection due to the extremely high level of shipping activity in the area. A new cable section was installed along a new route close to the current Sea-Me-We 3 route rather than re-burying the existing cable as this allowed the system outage to be kept to a minimum. Furthermore, the "CS Peter Faber", also operated by Alcatel, performed associated marine cable activities, including recovery of the existing old cable section. The "CS Peter Faber" cable ship also completed the post lay inspection and burial activities.

"The ability of Alcatel to perform deep burial of submarine cables in difficult sea environments, while maintaining the cable in normal operating conditions to minimize any system downtime, was a key factor in our choice," said Klaus Joessel, Management Committee Representative of T-Systems International for Sea-Me-We 3. "This new achievement will enable us to further enhance the security of our communications in the North Sea for our customers."

"We are delighted to have been selected again by the Sea-Me-We 3 consortium," stated Jean Godeluck, President of Alcatel's submarine activity. "This performance, achieved through the successful combination of a state of the art cable ship and the most advanced cable plough technology, confirms Alcatel position as a turnkey supplier, from installation to maintenance marine services."

This achievement further strengthens the co-operation between Alcatel and the Sea-Me-We 3 consortium, which dates back to 1997. Since then, Alcatel has participated in the deployment, upgrade and maintenance of the Sea-Me-We 3 submarine cable network. Alcatel has also been chosen as the sole supplier for the relevant terrestrial portion.

In a separate release:

Alcatel (Paris: CGEP.PA and NYSE: ALA) and PT Comunicações - a subsidiary of the Portugal Telecom Group, the largest telecommunications and multimedia business organization in Portugal - announce that a new optical undersea cable network, named CAM Ring, has begun service today. Based on Alcatel's 10 Gbit/s Dense Wavelength Digital Multiplexing (DWDM) and Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (SDH) terrestrial and submarine technologies, the CAM Ring enables PT Comunicações to provide its customers with enhanced transmission of domestic broadband traffic from Madeira and Azores islands to the Portugal mainland.

The new 1120-km undersea network incorporates Alcatel's undersea line DWDM terminals. To interconnect the CAM Ring's landing points in Ponta Delgada (Azores) and Funchal (Madeira) to the country's capital - Lisbon, Alcatel has also implemented its 10 Gbit/s SDH Optical Multi-Service Node (OMSN) system, Alcatel 1670 SM, for long distance terrestrial applications. An additional undersea cable leveraging Alcatel's unrepeatered systems links Madeira to the island of Porto Santo.

Both terrestrial and submarine equipment are managed by Alcatel's unified network management platform, which ensures efficient and cost-optimized monitoring throughout the network. The network provides PT Comunicações with a powerful and easy-to-upgrade architecture for evolving network requirements and enhanced service demands.

"Alcatel's expertise in end-to-end optical networking enables us to provide carriers such as PT Communicações with advanced transport solutions that economically scale to keep up with their customers' specific requirements," said Jean Godeluck, President of Alcatel's submarine network activity.

With more than 450,000 km of installed submarine networks and hundreds thousands of terrestrial systems implemented worldwide, Alcatel leads the global optical networking market.

Alcatel SA

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