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Industry News

6/2/2022 -

The Prysmian Group announced that it plans to invest $30 million in its Jackson plant in Tennessee to change its product mix to all optical fiber to meet the increasing demand for optical fiber broadband connectivity driven by federal and state stimulus packages.

A press release said that Prysmian’s total optical cable investment in North America now stands at $115 million, with the Jackson project adding to the $85 million announced last year. These investments increase Prysmian’s optical fiber capacity in its North American plants and expand its telecom footprint to meet customer demand more efficiently. As the market shifts from legacy copper infrastructure to fiber, Prysmian’s manufacturing facilities are adapting to mirror the shift in technology. The Jackson facility will change from producing copper to optical cable, making it the first plant within the Prysmian Group to be re-tooled to produce a different product.

Jackson will increase Prysmian’s capacity in loose tube and drop cables production, and the employees will learn new skills manufacturing optical fiber and cable that will connect homes and cities. Prysmian is a global leader in developing technology for new, reliable and efficient broadband networks, providing valuable new capacity and options for telecom network operators.

“The demand in North America makes us a strategic market globally, and the best way to meet this need is to produce more optical cables here in the US. This optimizes both the quality of service for our customers and the carbon footprint to build a high-performance infrastructure ready for 5G, smart cities and smart homes,” said Patrick Jacobi, Vice President of Telecom, Prysmian Group North America. “These investments are also a part of our global plan to increase capacity to support the digital transformation with innovative products, like the development of new ultra-broadband fiber optic telecommunication networks.”

The investment allows Prysmian to rapidly transition the Jackson plant to optical cable and increase the production efficiency in other facilities across the region. Prysmian Group North America has 28 manufacturing facilities, eight distribution centers and six R&D centers. The investment also will enable digital inclusion in local communities across North America while supporting the needs of Prysmian’s customers.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

Cerrowire, a leading U.S. manufacturer of copper building wire, which this year celebrates its 100th anniversary, announced that it plans to invest more than $100 million to build a 270,000-sq-ft facility.

A press release said that the plant, to be located in the Morgan Center Business Park in the city of Hartselle, Alabama, will produce metal-clad (MC) cable. “We are looking forward to Hartselle being the strategic location that is a perfect fit for our major new venture and to the creation of over 130 jobs to support this growing community,” said a statement from Cerrowire President Stewart Smallwood. “The state of Alabama, Morgan County, the Tennessee Valley Authority, and city of Hartselle are excellent partners in creating an environment for our business to flourish. Our workforce is dedicated to our growth and the production of high-quality products.”

The product focus will provide Cerrowire “an even stronger future by extending its product offerings in a way that positions the company and its retail partners and electrical distribution partners for success,” the release said. It noted that the MC cable market is a growing sector in the building wire market as it is used for most types of building construction, primarily in commercial, and is also used in some residential and industrial applications. Different wire configurations are wrapped in metal cladding to meet standards set by the National Electrical Code (NEC); end uses of MC cable include commercial building construction, data centers, and hospital applications. Electricians and electrical contractors like the streamlined installation process and lower cost factors with MC cable, driving the growth in demand and sales.

“Adding Metal Clad cable to our product portfolio allows us to leverage our core business—manufacturing building wire—and to provide a strong building wire solution that fulfills a growing need for our customers,” Smallwood said. “We’ve been asked to get into this segment because our customers know we will back MC with our ongoing commitment to product quality, on-time and in-full delivery, and industry-leading customer service. MC cable provides an exciting opportunity for focused growth for Cerrowire and our customers.”

Based in Hartselle and a Marmon/Berkshire Hathaway company, Cerrowire also has plants in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana and Utah.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

Marmon Aerospace & Defense, a Marmon/Berkshire Hathaway company, has broken ground on a new 80,000-sq-ft manufacturing facility in Hooksett, New Hampshire.

A press release said that when the plant is completed in the fall of 2023, it is expected to bring an additional 20 production jobs to the area. The company is investing $30 million in the new facility, which will house a state-of-the-art manufacturing operation producing large shipboard power cables to support the U.S. Navy and its ship-building network. The new operation will complement the company’s current product line at its plants in nearby Manchester, New Hampshire, and in Naples, Florida.

“This new facility will broaden Marmon’s military shipboard cable product offerings, which already include power, data, instrumentation, control, and communications cables,” said Robert Canny, president of Marmon Aerospace & Defense Group president. “We are pleased to make this investment in service to our customers, our team, and our community.”

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

LS Cable & System USA, part of South Korea’s LS Cable & System, plans a $26.9 million investment to expand its plant in Tarboro, North Carolina.

The announcement said that the company’s campus in Edgecombe County will be expanded over a three-year period. The investment will increase the current manufacturing capacity and add an additional 86 employees to the current staff of 188, said Bobby Piner, the plant’s manager of manufacturing. “This expansion will allow (us) to meet the current and growing needs of our customer base while providing job growth opportunities for our team members in Tarboro.”

LS Cable & System USA designs, manufactures and distributes an array of cable products for the rapidly growing energy sector within commercial, industrial, renewable and utility markets. The Tarboro plant, which makes low- and medium- voltage cables, opened in 2012.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

XLCC, a new HVDC, renewable energy-focused business in the U.K., has completed the concept design of an advanced, first-of-a-kind cable laying (CL) vessel—the XLCC CLV—to be delivered in the first half of 2025.

A press release said that the planned delivery of the XLCC CLV will support the Morocco, a U.K. power project that will require the delivery of four 3,800-km subsea HVDC cables from a wind and solar generation site in Morocco to the U.K. “Our vessel will be, on delivery, the most sophisticated, capable and green cable layer in the world,” said Alan Mathers, XLCC Director comments. “With this capability, we will be able to deliver on increasing demands globally for HVDC cable deployment and fill a current and future void in the market.”

In close collaboration with Salt Ship Design, the team has started the development of the basic design of the vessel while working towards the selection of a successful yard. The vessel design is being developed from basic design stage in 3D engineering software for best definition of steel structures and interiors arrangement. Operational aspects of the cable handling have been studied in close collaboration with MAATS Tech and Global Marine.

Asked by WJI what specifically will make the XLCC CLV the most advanced cable-laying ship ever, the company provided the below comments.

“Cable capacity is approximately double the largest CLVs in the present market. In laying significantly more cable per round trip, corresponding savings can be found in transit, time, and emissions. The speed of the loading the cable is significantly improved when compared to the industry standard. Cable loading has been aligned with production facilities, resulting in major time savings spent at harbor.

“The DC lay has been optimized with the two carousels below deck of the same capacity each. The vessel speed in transit is improved and optimized both for loaded condition and for returning to port empty. Transit speed loaded is approximately 15 knots, 16 knots returning to port.

“Unique to XLCC’s CLV is a hangar length of approximately 110 m. The vessel design, with its superstructure, is more aftship than typical, with the continuous hangar area in the vessel length above the carousels. The CLV will be prepared for future fuels (LOHC and methanol) with zero to low emission. Preparations for two alternative fuels in addition to MGO gives flexibility and ability to meet zero-emission operations in the future.”

Oman Australia Cable nears final step with completion of last cable landing

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

China’s ZTT Submarine Cable & System (ZTT) has completed the factory acceptance test and cable load out of 60 km of 230 kV subsea cable for the Negros-Panay interconnector project in the Philippines.

At its website, the company reports that it has delivered the marine survey, design, supply, and lay-off of three submarine XLPE cables for the interconnection project. The order, for 2021, includes engineering, procurement, commissioning and installation (EPCI).

The delivery and project execution is on time, and in accordance with the contract schedule. ZTT will commission the whole cable system. That includes associated accessories, such as load prediction systems and other equipment, from Panay Island to Negros Island. The system includes associated accessories such as load prediction systems and other equipment.

The interconnector, a three-stage project developed by the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP), will interconnect the islands of Cebu, Negros and Panay, as part of the plan to strengthen the overall Philippines power transmission network.

Stage one presents the submarine cable component that increases the transfer capacity of the existing corridor between Negros and Panay islands. Stages two and three of the Cebu-Negros-Panay interconnection project are to establish a 230 kV backbone to accommodate the transmission of excess power from Panay and Negros towards the rest of Visayas.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

NKT reports that it has completed connecting the power cable system that links the Hornsea 2 offshore wind farm to shore in what will be, when fully operational later this year, the world’s largest such energy producer.

A press release said that the Hornsea 2 system, which has capacity of 1.3 GW, required 196 km of 220 kV HVAC. Located 89 km off the English east coast, the wind farm has 165 8 MW turbines. The site was described as “a key to the transition to renewable energy in the U.K.,” designed to provide power to more than 1.3 million households when fully operational. The Hornsea claim to the world’s largest operating offshore wind
farm, will see it take the title from the current holder, Hornsea 1.

The power cables for Hornsea 2 were manufactured at the NKT factory in Karlskrona, Sweden, which runs on 100% green electricity minimizing the carbon footprint of the cable system. As part of the environmental focus of the operation, the installation of the submarine power cable systems was completed by NKT Victoria. The company will install the remaining turbines and continue testing, commissioning, and energizing Hornsea 2.

NKT has extensive experience in connecting offshore wind parks to the U.K. mainland including commissioned projects such as Hornsea 1, Moray East and the Walney Extension. Currently, NKT is involved in ongoing offshore wind projects such as the Dogger Bank offshore wind farm, which will be the first offshore wind farm in the U.K. to be connected to shore with a HVDC power cable link.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

Japan’s Furukawa Electric has won a contract from the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines to deliver cable for a subsea power transmission project.

A press release said that the order is worth approximately €33 million. Furukawa Electric will supply 230 kV AC XLPE-insulated 1600 mm2 triple-core submarine cable— which it notes is the world’s-largest conductor size class submarine cable—and cable temperature and load monitoring system. Delivery and completion of the cable system are scheduled for 2023.

The power transmission project will connect the Cebu Substation and Lapulapu Substation in Visayas. The new submarine power transmission will reinforce power transmission capacity and maintain the continuous transmission of power towards the major load centers in Mandaue and Mactan even during an N-1 contingency condition.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

The Prysmian Group will partner with Telstra, Australia’s largest telecom company, to build a new intercapital dual fiber path network in the country, a project that will require up to 20,000 km of optical fiber terrestrial cable.

A press release said that the national fiber network project, a multi-year project, will see Telstra build a new “state-of-the-art inter-city dual fiber path” to boost inter-capital capacity, as well as capacity for regional areas.

Prysmian and Telstra InfraCo undertook the development of a leading-edge optical cable system, leveraging Prysmian’s local R&D Lab. The Group invested to develop the next generation of high-strength, low-loss optical cable that has a highly ruggedized design, made for direct ploughing enabling long-distance deployment in harsh local conditions. The state-of-the-art cable design is combined with Prysmian’s BendBright® G.657.A2 Low Loss fiber technology. The cable has been developed to Australia’s unique environmental conditions and will be designed and manufactured locally at Prysmian’s factory on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

Prysmian will support this project through local production of the optical cables in Dee Why, Sydney, which will boost jobs and investment in local high-tech manufacturing. The Group is investing to upgrade the plant’s capacity and capability. The deployment includes up to 20,000 kms of dual high strength optical cables combined with upgrade of the network within the Metro cities.

 “There is an ever-growing demand for greater fiber capacity, enabling massive bandwidth and ultrafast data rates with lower latency,” said Philippe Vanhille, executive vice president of the Telecom Division at Prysmian Group.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

6/2/2022 -

U.S.-based Clearfield, which specializes in fiber management and connectivity platforms for communication service providers, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Finnish company Nestor Cables, a leading developer and manufacturer of fiber optic cable solutions.

A press release said that the pending acquisition follows a long-standing, synergistic relationship between Clearfield and Nestor, who have worked together for over a decade. Founded in 2007 in Oulu, Finland, Nestor’s product portfolio includes fiber optic cables, connectivity accessories for fiber optic networks and instrumentation, and the Nestor Optimus product family for microduct networks. Nestor offers complete solutions for fiber optic networks, including FTTH and FTTP.

Nestor has a strong market position in Finland as a supplier of optical fiber cabling. The company also exports many of its products to the European continent, accounting for approximately 30% of its annual revenues. In 2021, Nestor generated EUR €31.7 million in revenue under Finnish Accounting Standards

Nestor operates two production facilities and has customers in more than 50 countries. Since 2012, Nestor has supplied fiber optic cables for Clearfield. The strategic acquisition will enable Clearfield to vertically integrate the supply of its fiber optic cables to meet future customer demand. It also makes it possible for Clearfield to leverage Nestor’s deep technical expertise.

The deal will also enable Clearfield to extend the available supply of FieldShield fiber into the North American market. Clearfield expects to open optical fiber production in its Mexico facility and begin production of optical cable in North America in early calendar year 2023.

Last modified on June 2, 2022

5/4/2022 -

 Prysmian Group wins contract for Alaskan submarine fiber optic cable link project

The Prysmian Group reports that it has been awarded a contract from Alaska Power & Telephone Company (AP&T) to supply, install and test two submarine fiber optic cable links in southeast Alaska.

A press release said that the SEALink project, valued at nearly $20 million, is directed by AP&T’s subsidiary, AP&T Wireless (APTW). The goal is to improve

communications in southeast Alaska, bringing broadband to rural areas that are currently unserved. The SEALink project calls for a 214-mile submarine fiber optic cable from Alaska’s capital in Juneau to the Prince of Wales Island.

Under the terms of the turnkey contract, Prysmian will provide a 323-km MINISUB brand cable with 36 G.652.D FO. The cable will be produced at Prysmian’s Nordenham, Germany plant, one of the group’s three centers of excellence for submarine cable production. Delivery is scheduled for the third quarter of 2022, with provisional acceptance by end of 2022.The project is being managed by Projects BU.

“This is the second project with AP&T after the successful installation of the Lynn Channel Project in 2016,” said Hakan Ozmen, EVP Projects BU, Prysmian Group. “We are excited to be helping AP&T support the digital transition in these remote areas of Alaska.”

The project will bring high-speed broadband to the residents of Kasaan and Coffman Cove on Prince of Wales Island for the first time. It was made possible by a grant from the U.S. government’s Rural Utility Services. “We are honored to be entrusted with this prestigious contract by AP&T which underscores the trust and credibility our customers have for our products and capabilities on a worldwide basis,” said Ashutosh Bhargava, Global Business director Subsea Telecom of the Prysmian Group.

Last modified on May 4, 2022

5/4/2022 -

Rise Light & Power (Rise) and Delaware River Partners LLC (DRP) announced that they plan to work together to develop a submarine cable manufacturing facility in New Jersey “to attract an offshore cable manufacturer that would ultimately construct and operate the facility.”

A press release said that as part of its Outerbridge Renewable Connector project, “Rise is preparing to invest millions to develop a shovel-ready site for a submarine cable manufacturing facility at DRP-owned Repauno Port & Rail Terminal in Greenwich Township.” The proposed submarine cable manufacturing facility will have a footprint of approximately 30 acres, along with dock access. Upon approval of the Outerbridge Renewable Connector project, pending BPU, Rise and DRP will commence development and permitting work to make the site shovel-ready. The two companies will develop the site to be shovel-ready and collaborate to attract manufacturers for two types of subsea cables required for offshore wind farms. First are inter-array cables that connect turbines within the offshore wind farm to an offshore substation, and the second are export cables that connect the offshore substation to the onshore grid.

“This opportunity will bolster New Jersey’s leadership in offshore wind with a major investment to create good-paying jobs and become a national supply chain leader,” says Clint Plummer, CEO of Rise Light & Power. “The Outerbridge Renewable Connector will revitalize and repurpose infrastructure to meet New Jersey’s bold clean energy goals. We are excited about this partnership with Delaware River Partners.”

“We are proud to enter into a partnership with Rise Light & Power to develop New Jersey’s first submarine cable manufacturing facility,” commented Hank Alexander, DRP’s CEO. “The Repauno Port & Rail Terminal is an ideal location for this project. Conveniently situated along the Delaware River, we are accessible and fully capable of meeting the offshore wind industry’s needs.”

Of note, the Prysmian Group recently announced that it has signed a contract with the Commercial Development Company (CDC) to purchase a site in Brayton Point in Somerset, Massachusetts, which pending final approvals will be the site of a new plant to manufacture submarine power cable, an initiative that will cost an estimated $200 million. A press release said that the deal is subject to securing state construction permits as well as confirmation of the official awarding of cable contracts for the Commonwealth Wind and Park Wind City offshore wind projects.

 

Last modified on May 4, 2022