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Crews finish installation of northern Alaska fiber-optic cable project

  • Author: Annie Zak
  • Updated: October 24, 2017
  • Published October 24, 2017

Zachary McGee and Dalton Zmack lay warning tape above a fiber-optic cable being buried along a street in Nome on Aug. 22, 2016. (Bob Hallinen / Alaska Dispatch News)

Installation is finished on the Alaska portion of an Arctic undersea fiber-optic cable project that will deliver high-speed broadband service to the northern part of the state.

The project by Anchorage-based company Quintillion is scheduled to provide service starting in December.

Quintillion said on Tuesday that crews have installed the last segment of cable under the ocean floor for the Alaska section, which is the first phase of a larger project. The company also plans to eventually extend the cable from Nome to Asia and from Prudhoe Bay to Canada and the United Kingdom.

The cable system running along Alaska's coast will provide service to Utqiagvik, Wainwright, Point Hope, Kotzebue, Nome and Prudhoe Bay.

Most of the installation of the Alaska cable system, which runs more than 1,000 miles under the seafloor, was finished last year. Crews returned this summer to lay the final 40 miles.

The portion of the system installed last year has been in test mode since November. In addition to the undersea cable, Quintillion also installed a cable that runs between Fairbanks and Prudhoe Bay that has been in service since spring.