UK broadband services are set to be boosted by the deployment of a new fibre cable under the Arctic Ocean.
The Russian Optical Trans-Arctic Submarine Cable System (Rotacs) will run between London and Japan, following the coastline of Russia and northern Europe.
Retreating see ice has made construction of the submarine fibre connection a possibility, and the Polarnet Project will carry out the work this summer.
Deployment will take place during August 2012 using specially customised cable ships.
Construction of the Rotacs cable is expected to be difficult, however once in place, the risks of damage will be lower than in other oceans.
Ships anchors have been known to sever such cables, as seen recently off the coast of Kenya where damage was caused to the East African Marine System
Meanwhile, another two fibre-optic cables are set to be built through the North West Passage above Canada and Alaska, boosting broadband performance in North America and Asia.