As data centres age and companies find it difficult to meet expansion demands from within the business, more and more companies will find themselves searching for a temporary solution for temperature control and power generation, says one of the UK’s leading energy rental solutions specialists.
Jason Harryman, data centre key accounts manager for Energyst CAT Rental Power, says the company is increasingly working with data centres as they struggle to meet the demands on their businesses.
“Many of today’s data centres were built more than four years ago and as such, these buildings now face problems coping with the intense power and cooling demands of modern hardware, such as high-density blade servers and virtualisation technologies.
“We are finding that the majority of our work comes to us when businesses acknowledge that they have outgrown their existing facilities and are building their next site. It’s often the case that the new site can be built a whole lot quicker than any supplier can install permanent power and cooling. Our pan-European organisation allows us to immediately step in to provide temporary power and temperature control for the new building while a permanent solution is installed and then, upon installation, our load bank service can test this permanent solution to meet the needs of even the most discerning of insurance companies.”
Long delivery times
Delivery times of fixed power supplies are growing ever longer. By choosing a temporary solution, data centres can get down to business much sooner than waiting for a permanent solution and can even plan to open their new centre in phases.
Advice for data centre managers
Jason believes that when data centre managers are choosing a temporary supplier, it’s essential to avoid a hire desk solution and instead, they should turn to a company that can supply a whole solution from planning, to design, installation and fuel management.
“Firstly, a well thought through choice in the temporary equipment required is essential,” says Jason. “For example, our technical specialists will draw up an inventory of risks on the basis of every data centres’ specific situation. Your supplier should offer advice on the machinery, taking into account an acceptable maximum dip in voltage and frequency. The ability to make your power supply redundant is also vital, and this applies not just to stand alone units, but also to the essential parts of the installation such as dual fuel pipelines and buffer tanks.”
The temporary power and temperature control supplier should also appoint a project leader who will be responsible for the logistical planning of transportation, cranes, forklifts and scaffolding. Jason says: “Depending on the size of your project, a safety plan should also be drawn up. Prior to delivery, the equipment’s set-up should be fine-tuned and be subjected to extensive testing. You should also make sure your appointed supplier’s mechanics are all STEK mark holders and work according to VCA basic safety regulations.”
Temperature control is essential in data centres and suppliers should be able to provide a flexible solution to meet your exact requirements, whether it’s just a few kilowatts for a smaller service enclosure to a multi-megawatt system able to satisfy the entire cooling needs of your data centre.
Alongside temporary power and cooling solutions, Energyst is also finding its load bank service being frequently called upon as data centres expand. The company provides resistive / reactive load banks for testing of AC supplies (at unity or variable power factor) or for battery discharge and UPS testing. All load banks can be employed for most voltages and sizes.