Google is building a subsea cable running from the East Coast of the U.S. to Las Toninas, Argentina, which will be the longest in the world capable of running temporarily on a single power source in case of power outages.
The Firmina cable is intended to improve Google services to South American users. While it's technically challenging to build single-end, fiber-paired cables that stretch over long distances and rely on a single power source, the Google team managed the feat by increasing the cable supply voltage 20% higher than traditional methods.
The Firmina cable will be the 16th Google undersea cable investment.
Anna Kramer is a reporter at Protocol (Twitter: @
anna_c_kramer), where she helps write and produce Source Code, Protocol's daily newsletter. Prior to joining the team, she covered tech and small business for the San Francisco Chronicle and privacy for Bloomberg Law. She is a recent graduate of Brown University, where she studied International Relations and Arabic and wrote her senior thesis about surveillance tools and technological development in the Middle East.