Iron Mountain begins tracking hourly energy consumption
US-based data centre operator and secure information storage firm Iron Mountain has joined a small list of early adopters by committing to take steps to track the hourly renewable energy load of its data centres.
To do this, Iron Mountain is partnering with two renewable energy companies, RPD Energy and Direct Energy, who are offering a much more granular form of some of the annual or even monthly power purchase agreements (PPAs) increasingly used by hyperscalers to secure green power for their facilities.
According to the company, conventional PPAs only match the buyer’s electricity load on an annual or monthly basis, which can mean that fluctuations in demand require the customer to dip back into the local grid to support usage spikes. In the US, where Iron Mountain operates, even briefly relying on the local power grid can make for a significant increase in carbon emissions.
By tracking hourly usage from the company’s generator and comparing it to Iron Mountain’s hourly usage, the arrangement provides “a future view of how firms can transition to truly carbon free energy supply.”
The new structure is intended to bring a level of transparency and flexibility to Iron Mountain’s power sourcing process which is hard to find elsewhere in the industry. The program is being kicked off as a way of powering two data centres (as well as more than 60 other buildings) that the company owns in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, which will be better serviced with 100% renewable energy.
Chris Pennington, Global Energy Manager at Iron Mountain Data commented: “Iron Mountain is seeking to move beyond the conventional approach of matching renewable power on an annual basis, to matching renewable power generation with its hourly energy use. This is ultimately the path needed to decarbonise energy use.”
This announcement supports Iron Mountain’s sustainability efforts at a time when the company’s load across its global platform of data centres is growing significantly.
Earlier this week, Iron Mountain also announced the signing of two significant leases with a Fortune 11 technology customer to provide a further 6 MW of capacity in its AZP-2 data centre in Phoenix, Arizona.
AZP-2 is a hyperscale-ready facility built over three stories and also powered by 100% renewable energy. The data centre is expected to have a total capacity of around 58 MW upon full buildout.
NKG1 opens BDx Nanjing data centre campus
Big Data Exchange (BDx), a pan-Asian data centre company has launched its Nanjing data centre campus in China with the opening of its first facility, NKG1. The company said they “celebrated” the launch of the campus, located in the Yangtze River Delta, one of the nation's richest regions and its largest import and export base.
Following its certificate of completion from the Urban and Rural Construction Bureau of Jiangning District in Nanjing City, the NKG1 campus is “now serving customers”. Construction on the Nanjing campus began in February last year.
"We worked through the challenges of completing a major construction project during the peak of the pandemic because customers were anticipating this launch to support an unprecedented surge of growth and capacity requirements”, said Bill Gao, EVP & Chief Executive Officer of BDx Greater China.
"The launch of NKG1 enables BDx to have new world-class data centre infrastructure in China. It also lays a solid foundation for BDx to provide OTTs, financial services institutions, and Fortune 500 MNC customers with high reliability, high redundancy, and low latency solutions”, he added.
What does the NKG1 data centre include?
According to BDx, the NKG1 facility is the first data centre in the city to earn the Uptime Institute Tier III Certification of Design Documents and offers 4MW of IT power for colocation. NKG1 is powered by two separate 10-kilovolt feeders from two substations that aim to provide the NKG campus with 60MVA of total power sanctioned from the grid.
During COVID-19, BDx says that its design and construction team focused on safety to ensure that the project was completed safely and without incident. This enabled the company to add critical capacity to this region and respond to the accelerated shift to digital environments that caused a surge in demand for data center services. “Research shows that demand hasn't dropped as the economy reopens”, BDx said.
The launch of NKG2
Due to rising demand in China’s data centre market, BDx plans to launch the second phase of its Nanjing campus, NKG2, by the end of this year. “NKG2 is designed to be minimally manned and almost lights-out — a reigning philosophy across BDx's data center cluster. In addition, its highly automated features make for a more sustainable data center environment”, the company said.