The Atlantic will be getting yet another cable system it seems, but this time it's on a route rarely travelled. EllaLink has won a key anchor customer for a cable system connecting Portugal with Brazil. The research and education networks GEANT and RedCLARA are putting €25M up for direct capacity between Europe and South America.
As currently planned, EllaLink will bring some 72Tbps of connectivity between the two continents. In South America it will land at both Fortaleza and at Praia Grande near Sao Paolo, two popular cable destinations with plenty of interconnection options. In Portugal the system will come ashore at Sines, not far from Lisbon and at a new location distinct from other cables landing in the region and with terrestrial access over to Madrid of course. In between are several islands that will probably see branches, such as Madeira and Cabo Verde.
We haven't seen a cable on this route since ATLANTIS-2 (I think that's the one), and unlike most new builds it doesn't seem to be on the radar of the big cloud/content guys. That may change as interest in the nearby interconnection market of Madrid continues its rapid growth. EllaLink offers a bypass route between Europe and Latin America that doesn't land first in the eastern US. By taking the direct route and avoiding North America, latency will be substantially reduced, probably by about half or more.
Alcatel Submarine Networks will be handling the installation, which is envisioned to be complete sometime in 2020. With much of its funding in place, it looks as if this cable system is ready to move onto the marine survey and construction.