Security and operational management
At a minimum , physical security should take a multi-layered approach , starting with high-grade perimeter fencing , obstructions such as anti-ram bollards as well as thorough access control procedures for personnel and visitors , CCTV recording and highly trained security personnel . However , there is scope for continuous improvement .
For example , at Vantage , one of the areas we see potential in is Artificial Intelligence ( AI ) for perimeter defence and intrusion detection . These solutions utilise cameras and other Internet-of-Things ( IoT ) sensors to determine and identify activity on campus and alert security personnel if it ’ s determined to be a threat .
On the operational side of things , modern energy management and building management systems go a long way in providing the comprehensive monitoring , measurement , alerting and reporting that operators and customers need . However , an operator must still conduct regular scheduled maintenance cycles which requires trained engineers to be on hand 24 / 7 . Further initiatives such as predictive diagnostics and carrying sufficient onsite spares are further prerequisites in this department , enabling engineers to respond quickly to potential or actual equipment failures .
Being totally confident in the critical infrastructure also requires it to be rigorously tested . Some data centres will have procedures to test their installations but still rely on simulating total loss of incoming power . Ultimate proof comes with Black Testing where , under strictly controlled conditions , incoming mains power is isolated allowing the UPS to take the full load before the emergency backup generators kick in .
The industry ’ s move to net zero also clearly impacts on data centre design and requires a holistic approach . One that that considers the impact on carbon , energy , water , waste and the communities wherever data centres operate . For example , by designing facilities to limit waste and lower carbon footprint by making them as energy efficient as possible and run on renewably sourced power . And exploring opportunities to reduce the carbon intensity of the fuels used for backup power generation .
Using building materials that have lower embodied carbon is as further initiative . Recently in Virginia , Arizona and California , we used fibreglass reinforced plastic ( FRP ) instead of steel for some equipment supports and pedestrian walkways , reducing embodied carbon by approximately 1,800 MTCO2e . We ’ re also exploring ways to export waste heat from our Zurich and Frankfurt campuses into the local district heat network .
In summary , to deliver sustainable fit-forpurpose and highly resilient data centres requires a holistic design cycle : centred on maximising certainty of outcome across all areas of the data centre . This demands a standardised approach while remaining flexible enough to meet customer-specific needs . From a turnkey to a total buildto-suit scenario , the design objective is to always ensure predictability so that customers can scale quickly and reliably in any geographic region . �
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