Relief in Sight for Sinking Tennessee Data Center

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Last July we noted reports that the state of Tennessee’s primary data center is slowly sinking, prompting the state to invest $68 million to build two new data centers in Nashville and Smyrna, which were scheduled to be ready in 2010. It looks like that schedule has been moved up, as ComputerWorld reports that the state has accelerated construction on the first new data center in Smyrna and may begin transferring critical applications and data out of the sinking Nashville facility as soon as the first quarter of 2009.

ComputerWorld notes that the state of Tennessee’s facility is “located in the worse spot in America for a data center – on an unstable landfill, next to a railroad and a river and downstream from a large dam that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says has a risk of failing.” The center requires constant monitoring, and some areas are too unstable for storing heavy computer equipment. “The back end of it, it sinks into the old landfill, and we have to prop it up, apparently on a fairly routine basis, so it’s not secure,” state Finance Commissioner Dave Goetz said last year. Goetz noted at the time that “if the Wolf River Dam breaks (the data center) will be under about 12 feet of water, which is hard on computers.”

About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.