Fibre optic expansion will be done by 2025, KRG says

At meeting in Kuujjuaq, KRG announced all Hudson coast communities will have fibre optic by November 2023, with plans for Kuujjuaq also revealed.

Kativik Regional Government’s internet provider, Taamani, is set to finish fibre optic development on the Hudson coast this year, beginning expansion on the Ungava side. (Photo by Cedric Gallant)

By Cedric Gallant - Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Communities on the Hudson coast will have full fibre optic internet service by the end of this year, Kativik Regional Government announced Wednesday.

It said the ship carrying more than 500 kilometres of cable needed for the work is expected to leave Halifax on Friday, set for Puvirnituq.

At a public meeting Wednesday, details on the project to connect Kuujjuaq and the rest of the Ungava Bay communities to fibre optic were presented to about a dozen people by KRG’s senior adviser in telecommunications Dan Pellerin.

Kativik Regional Government senior telecommunication adviser Dan Pellerin explains the new fibre optic development that will come to Nunavik this year. (Photo by Cedric Gallant)

He said Kuujjuaq will be connected through a land cable running from near Schefferville. This year, his team intends to survey the nearly 400-kilometre stretch before placing the cable in 2025.

To limit the environmental impact of the work, all terrestrial labour will be done during the winter using snowmobiles. The strategy is to simply place the cable on top of snow, and let it place itself as the snow melts in the spring.

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Then, “there will be a crew that’ll come in the summer to make sure that the cable in the lake is correct and clean up the work,” Pellerin said.

Existing natural corridors in wooded areas were scoped out to prevent excessive tree cutting.

The fibre optic cable itself is no bigger than five centimetres in diameter.

The date of completion is currently set at June 2025 for Kuujjuaq and Kangiqsujuaq, and July 2025 for the rest of Ungava.

In the meantime, to alleviate the pressure for access to satellite internet service Pellerin has applied for increased satellite capacity in Nunavik.

“We know that putting in the fibre is going to take time,” he said. “But if we can turn up more satellites as a bridge, we will pay for it.”

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He said some of that demand for satellite service will be relieved as soon as Akullivik, Ivujivik and Salluit have their fibre optic installed by November this year.

Currently, Kuujjuaraapik, Umiujaq, Inukjuak and Puvirnituq have full access to fibre optic service. Pellerin said everyone in these communities can get 1000 gigabytes per second, of internet at all times.

Pellerin said internet capacity offered by fibre optic service will fill the needs of Nunavik and also Nunavut for 25 years to come.

“Off the coast of Salluit,” he said, “we are putting a branching unit with a piece of fibre that will be coiled at the bottom. At some point, the Government of Nunavut can connect to that branch.”

He said fibre optic has an advantage over satellite services like Starlink when it comes to latency, or the speed at which data can be transferred..

“From Kuujjuaq to Puvirnituq, fibre optic can do that in about 10 milliseconds,” he said, while satellite service could take up to 100 milliseconds latency.

“There are limitations to any satellite. It’s similar to a radio dial,” he said.

“We don’t want anybody to feel they have just been left behind. Broadband internet is no longer a nice thing to have, it is a must-have.”

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(2) Comments:

  1. Posted by UFC fan !! on

    My UFC live ppv doesn’t buffer with Starlink. I’ll be very impressed with tamaani if my ppv doesn’t buffer with tamaani fiber optics internet service in the future.

  2. Posted by Ads on

    “From Kuujjuaq to Puvirnituq, fibre optic can do that in about 10 milliseconds,” he said, while satellite service could take up to 100 milliseconds latency.

    Good to know my ads will load even faster! ?

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