U.S. Army to Deploy Clouds, Modular Data Centers

An HP Performance Optimized Datacenter (POD) container being lowered into place at an Airbus facility.

In a move to modernize its infrastructure, the U.S. Army will spend up to $249 million to deploy private cloud computing services and modular data centers. General Dynamics, HP and Northrop Grumman are among the service providers selected for the Army Private Cloud contract (APC2), which will provision cloud computing services to consolidate data centers using a secure private cloud.

The Army divided this contract to acquire enterprise cloud computing services in two parts. The first suite will provide savings by using private cloud computing capacity for commercial or government-owned buildings. The second suite will utilize mobile, containerized data centers for contingency operations or when rapid or temporary cloud computing is needed.

The announcement shed light on the U.S. military’s use of containerized data centers. General Dynamics said it has “successfully fielded more than 6,000 tactical shelters and containerized systems for the Army.” HP will also deploy containerized systems as part of the APC2 contract. HP’s Performance-Optimized Data Centers (HP PODs) can be quickly deployed into overseas tactical situations or as flexible additions to U.S.-based computing solutions.

“A highly flexible and innovative contract, along with reliability and scalability for long-term needs, is important for the Army and our federal clients,” said Marilyn Crouther, senior vice president and general manager, U.S. Public Sector, HP Enterprise Services. “As a leader in data center outsourcing with extensive experience with the Army and Department of Defense, HP is uniquely qualified to partner with the Army in achieving its IT objectives in both fixed and deployed environments.”

Under the terms of APC2, HP will team with world-class partners, including 10 small businesses and Alabama A&M University, to provide a wide range of critical services.

General Dynamics, Northrop Grumman and HP have all been selected to compete for the fixed facility task order awards under the APC2 program.

“General Dynamics has a strong history of integrating state-of-the-art technology for high performance, reliable and scalable data center and cloud solutions,” said Zannie Smith, senior vice president of the National and Homeland Security Division for General Dynamics Information Technology. “We will leverage our data center expertise and logistics management skills, as well as our extensive knowledge of the Army’s methodologies and processes to help our customer achieve its goal of providing secure, global access to information, while reducing technology costs and energy usage worldwide.”

“Northrop Grumman’s cloud computing solutions have been optimized to address the unique mission and cybersecurity requirements of our warfighters while providing the efficiency benefits of cloud operations,” said Karen Williams, vice president of the Defense Technologies Division for Northrop Grumman Information Systems. “Through the APC2 contract Northrop Grumman will support the Army and Department of Defense’s movement to the cloud.”

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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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