The UK Royal Navy has announced that it is developing a new Multi-Role Ocean Surveillance ship (MROSS) to protect the UK’s maritime interests. One of the driving forces behind the ship’s development is to protect the UK’s submarine cables.
In an interview with the BBC, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace recognised undersea communications cables as “critical national infrastructure” and warned that “the lights could go out” if the UK’s subsea infrastructure was damaged.
The vessel is expected to enter into service by 2024 and will host a crew of approximately 15 people.
The announcement has been cautiously welcomed by the submarine cable industry. Eckhard Bruckschen, Managing Director & Editor of SubCableNews commented: “This is positive news in the respect that subsea cables are now very much seen as critical and very valuable infrastructure, which need protection, even from governments themselves. However, going public with this could make these cables more vulnerable and could attract unwanted attention.”
To keep up to date with the latest updates from the global submarine cable industry, join us in London on 1st – 3rd September for Submarine Networks EMEA 2021.