The Lefdal Mine Datacenter (LMD) is a vast 120,000 square metre, multi-level installation currently under construction near Måløy on Norway’s west coast.
Once complete, it will be Europe’s largest data centre, producing a capacity of 100 megawatts.
However, LMDs ambitions extend far beyond simply size and scale. Its stated aim is to become number one data centre in Europe in terms of cost-efficiency, security, flexibility and sustainability.
To help achieve this, LMD is using a standardised data centre infrastructure based on Rittal’s modular and standardised RiMatrix S data centre portfolio.
The first units are planned to be completed and put into operation by 2016, a year that will mark the beginning of the industrialisation of data centres by Rittal.
The five-level installation is being built underground inside an old mineral mine.
It will be fully powered by renewable energy (wind and water power) and feature a cooling system based on seawater coming from the adjacent fjord. A maximum energy efficiency PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) rating of less than 1.1 will be combined with traditionally low electricity costs, delivering 40 per cent cost savings over an average cloud data centre in Germany.
The LMD team wanted an enclosure system that combined flexibility with the benefits of standardisation. Their preference was for a pre-assembled data centre that could be shipped within a relatively short time period but which was based on the tested, pre-certified components achieved by volume production.
Rittal worked with LMD and IBM to develop standardised modules based on RiMatrix S. In total, there will be five different modules, each consisting of ten to twelve server enclosures and one network enclosure. They will be delivered pre-assembled, tested and as a scalable solution.
The enclosures will be cooled by Rittal’s climate control solution Liquid Cooling Package (LCP). LCP extracts the heated server exhaust air at the rear of the enclosures, cools it by using high-performance heat exchangers and blows the cooled air back into the cold aisle in front of the servers.
The data centre modules also feature redundant power supply and back-up; customers can choose between 5, 10 or 20 kW of output per rack depending on what they require. They also have two redundancy options: n+1 and 2n.
The modules will be placed either in containers or in secure rooms depending on the protection level needed by the customer.
LMD delivers scalability thanks to its practically unlimited resources, all of which will help it meet the needs of any customers requiring more data centre capacity.
The data centre’s offer (currently unmatched within Europe) was born out of the need to respond to rising demand for data centre space.
“We foresee a need of 60 new, large-scale date centres in Europe until 2020 alone and expect investment to that effect with a growth rate of ten to twelve per cent each year,” explains Egil Skibenes, Chairman of the Board at LMD.
He regards it as vital for data centres to be able to provide additional capacity for customers quickly – a growing need which precludes turn-key solutions. Furthermore, demand is growing for for cost-effectiveness and energy efficiency.
“The standardised and yet scalable modules we can offer are exactly what our customers need,” says Andreas Keiger, Executive Vice President, Sales, Europe, at Rittal.
“Factors such as operating costs and energy-efficiency are drivers when it comes to selecting the perfect data centre location.”