Financial Firm Deploys Modular Data Center Park

Containers from AST Modular have been isntalled at a data center park in Denmark for a financial services customer.

Is the financial industry ready to go modular? We asked that question back in May, when Wells Fargo executives said they were looking at modular data center solutions. This month we’ve seen a major affirmation of financial services companies’ willingness to house their IT systems in modular data centers.

AST Modular said that it has built data center container parks in two locations in Denmark for a global player in the financial outsourcing industry. The deployments consist of 21 containers – seven 40-foot IT containers, seven 10-foot Natural Free Cooling Containers, three 40-foot service containers for power and back up cooling, and four 20-foot Containers housing diesel generators.

Modularity Going Mainstream

“The moment has finally come for containers to go mainstream even within the corporate enterprise environment,” said Henry Daunert, CEO at AST Modular. “AST Modular’s Data Center Park in Denmark is the true evidence of a shift in perspective by the financial industry towards containers. We believe that the modular approach is affirming itself as the only sustainable data center model and once again we are pleased to be at the forefront of such a process.”

The financial industry is careful about adopting new technologies due to its high requirements for reliability and uptime. As a result, the use of modules by financial firms – including both the ATS client and a recent customer installation by i/o in New Jersey  – offers a sign that modular design is catching on with even the most selective enterprise customers.

Extending Existing Data Centers

The new container parks are being built adjacent to existing data centers operated by the financial institution’s outsourcing provider. The modules and existing brick and mortar data centers are interconnected by redundant dark fiber trunks,  enabling the whole campus to work as a resilient virtual data center of about 9000 m2 raised floor space.

AST says the container park achieves a recorded Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) of 1.13, due largely to the use of  the Natural Free Cooling (NFC), AST Modular’s indirect air-to=air and evaporative cooling solution. NFC utilizes a heat pipe heat exchanger technology to cool the data center by leveraging temperature differences between outside cold air and hot IT exhaust air. The hot IT air is cooled inside segregated chambers and no outdoor air is introduced into the IT space.

The modules were delivered within 14 to 18 weeks, and were deployed on real estate previously used for parking lots.

A look at the air intake for the AST Natural Free Cooling module, which uses multiple cooling modes, including outside air or a cobmination of outside air and recirculated waste heat from servers.

A data center container from AST Modular being hoisted into place. The modules took 14 to 18 weeks from order to installation.

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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.

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