AFR-IX telecom announced today that it has awarded Alcatel Submarine Networks (ASN) an agreement for the construction of the 8,700 km Medusa Submarine Cable System, an ambitious project which will connect the two shores of the Mediterranean.

AFR-IX telecom, the infrastructure and telecom operator and Barcelona-based, owns Medusa and is developing it to respond to three urgent connection needs:

  • North Africa with South Europe connectivity
  • Mediterranean with Atlantic connectivity
  • Mediterranean islands to mainland connectivity such as Sicily and Crete

Medusa is a new generation submarine cable and follows the open cable standard and, as such, the project aims to respond to the current challenges of submarine connections: establishing new routes to diversify and decongest data traffic, gaining capacity with a greater number of fibers per cable and promoting open access to all European landing stations.

The cable will depart from Lisbon and end its route in the Egyptian city of Port Said, passing through different Mediterranean countries. In this sense, it will have 16 landing points in countries, West to East, such as Portugal, Morocco, Spain, Algeria, France, Tunisia, Italy, Greece and Egypt.

Medusa cable route
Medusa cable route, Source: AFR-IX


The Medusa submarine cable system will feature up to 24 fiber pairs with a capacity of 20 Tbps per fiber pair, expected to be operational between the end of 2024 and the beginning of 2025, with the activation of the first phase connecting Lisbon, Barcelona and Marseille.